The BMW M division is synonymous with high-performance vehicles, but it appears the future is holding a few surprises – with the alleged inclusion of autonomous and electric technology.
The legendary moniker was first seen on a BMW vehicle back in 1972 and for the past 44 years it has been the go to address for the diehard fans. While BMW is still looking to deliver “The Ultimate Driving Machine,” it appears even the niche M unit has to keep up with the times. Electric and hybrid powertrains, as well as autonomous technologies are already a fact for the BMW brand – and it now appears all these could also trickle up to the flagship M models.
BMW AG member of the board of management Ian Robertson recently hinted about the carmaker looking into treating the performance M range with electric and autonomous technology. The confirmation is not entirely outspoken, but we can see the i8 evolving into an M machine – after all in its standard spec it already has a 357 horsepower plug in powertrain in a rear-drive, mid-engine layout. The executive was quick though to point out how the BMW DNA will still be visible at the end of the day, so as to retain its fan base. Meanwhile, we can expect the new generation of electric vehicles from BMW to arrive around 2021, so the M versions could follow soon after that, including semi or full-autonomous features.