There’s a new report in town about the upcoming flagship from BMW – dubbed iNext – which brings a host of interesting characteristics: 2021 arrival, Dingolfing, Germany, production location, Level 3 autonomous capabilities and a crossover body style.
Bavaria’s current flagship – the 7 Series – has been holding the kingship position for decades but that’s all going to change, with the arrival of the X9 crossover and from 2021 of the iNext model. It will feature an all-electric powertrain and all the best technical capabilities that should become available four years from now. According to the rumor mill’s latest whispers, the Vision Next 100 concept showed last year is not an accurate preview of the iNext flagship, because instead of a sedan (albeit a futuristic one), the latter will adopt a more popular today crossover body. Officially BMW entitles it as a “larger vehicle”, with the report talking about a size and shape comparable with the Jaguar I-Pace that is arriving this year in production form.
Because it’s not going to trump on the upcoming X9, the iNext will have to bring technological advancements – such as Level 3 self-driving systems. They will arrive a bit late with this though – the Audi A8 is already expected to be the first vehicle in the world with such advanced technology later this fall when it makes if official global debut. What will the iNext do is become quickly capable of Level 4 (High Automation), so it can handle even emergency scenarios without human intervention and become upgradable to the max Level 5 (Full Automation), which is a car that can discard the steering wheel and pedals altogether.