BMW Expects High "i" Brand Sales
With the introduction of the new "i" line from BMW, the German automaker hopes to build more than 100,000 units per year by 2020 to help reach CO2 emissions regulations. Models like the i8 and i3 electric vehicles will help the automaker reach these goals. Currently, BMW hopes to cut emissions, increasing its fuel economy average from 41 mpg to just under 53 mpg by 2020. Regulators in Europe set an industrywide goal of 57 mpg by 2021, but automakers with heavier vehicles, such as BMW, will have a lower target. The BMW i3 electric vehicle has already received a good reception from European buyers, and since it hit showroom floors back in November 16, 2013, the automaker has sold over 11,000 units. "We are extremely happy with the i3's early reception, particularly considering that in June we will open the order book in the United States, the world's largest market for EVs," said Ian Robertson, BMW brand's head of marketing and sales in a recent statement. Along with the i3, the i8 plug-in hybrid coupe has been a hit among customers, with strong numbers of pre-orders. The vehicle will be released globally in June, but Robertson believes "customers could live with the idea of waiting six months for such an innovative product, but longer waiting lists could be a problem." But how will BMW achieve these production numbers? The company has invested roughly $826 million to produce the i3 and i8, and more investments may be necessary, especially if BMW hopes to expand the "i" line even further. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)
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