- Jun 26, 2009
Back in time: a gallery of BMW's electric car prototypes through the years
Historic BMW Electric Vehicles - Click for high-res image gallery
Although the closest thing you can get to an electric car at BMW these days is one with Start & Stop technology, a hybrid (in the near future) or, if you're lucky, the Mini E, BMW has a long history of developing electric cars. For the 1972 Olympic games held in Munich, BMW provided a small fleet of orange-colored BMW 1602 Saloons that used a battery-powered electric motor. The cars didn't have much range, thanks lead-acid technology, a 144 V motor with 32 kw (about 43 hp), but they were good enough to be the support car in the marathon.
Following this, BMW made an all-EV model called the E1 in 1993. This all-electric car offered space for four passengers and their luggage, and used lightweight construction. The body was a combination of extrusion-pressed aluminum profiles with the outer skin made of plastic and aluminum. The E1 concept had a maximum speed of 80 mph and weighed less than 2,000 lbs and used a water-cooled motor. Besides the all-electric car, BMW made a hybrid version of the E1. Its internal combustion engine was a modified version of the 4-cylinder BMW K1100 motorcycle mated to a five-speed manual gearbox. It produced 82 hp at 5800 rpm, and the driver could switch between electric-only propulsion for zero-emission city driving and turning on the ICE on the highway.
We've compiled a large gallery of pictures of these models for your enjoyment. Check it out below.
All EV BMW 1602 All EV BMW 1602 All EV BMW 1602 All EV BMW 1602 All EV BMW 3-series from the early 80s All EV BMW 3-series from the early 80s All EV BMW 3-series from the early 80s The late 80s early 90s 3-series EVs Early 90s 3-series EV Early 90s 3-series EV Early 90s 3-series EV BMW E1 BMW E1 BMW E1 BMW E1 BMW E1 BMW E1 BMW E1's electric motor
[Source: BMW, Conceptcarz]