BMW is known for delivering the "Ultimate Driving Machine," words that don't really conjure up images of tiny city cars that rarely get a chance to exceed 40 miles per hour. So, it's somewhat surprising that the company's first mass-produced electric vehicle (EVs) will be targeted at urbanites in need of basic transport.
Why has BMW chosen the Megacity for its first foray into mass-produced EVs and not the awesome ActiveE concept pictured above? The answer has to do with the company's belief that electric vehicles will continue to be a small, niche market for years to come. Jack Pitney, vice president of marketing for BMW North America, told Automotive News that in the near future, the company sees EVs as small city cars for people who willingly accept the reduced range of the vehicles. He added that 95 percent of Mini E lessees in major urban cities are more than satisfied with that car's official 100-mile range.
Many automakers have focused EV efforts on heavily populated urban centers. From the Mini E offered in New York, New Jersey and California to the Nissan Leaf kicking off in several major cities, it's apparent that the target market is urban centers and not the outlying rural areas. Suburbanites will get their chance at a slightly later date.