BMW i3 and i8

Imagine you're an auto exec launching a new line of cars. One's a sportscar, the other a city car – pretty much opposite extremes on the spectrum of automotive bodystyles. Do you give them alphanumeric nameplates close to one another? Of course not. You assign them disparate numbers to make room for more models to slot in between.

That's just what BMW is doing with its upcoming "i" range, with an i3 at one end and the i8 (star of the recent Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol). So what does it have planned to fit in the middle? According to Autobild out of Germany, an i5.

The third model in the range is tipped to come in as a compact MPV in a similar mold as the Toyota Prius V – only probably significantly more expensive. Underpinnings would likely be borrowed from the i3, but stretched out a bit to make extra room for people and stuff. For that matter, we wouldn't be surprised to see an i2 come in as a two-door version of the i3 with the Smart ForTwo in its sights, or an i6 or i7 electric sedan, either.
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