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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  • 22 Comments
      SPG1
      • 2 Years Ago
      The antichrist is coming
      diffrunt
      • 2 Years Ago
      There is potential, but why would I want to expose my right or left hip to public view?
        • 2 Years Ago
        @diffrunt
        [blocked]
        Shiftright
        • 2 Years Ago
        @diffrunt
        In case you're wearing a long skirt with a slit up the side...
      CruzControl
      • 2 Years Ago
      All of these silly "i" monikers are giving me an "i-headache." Just like BMW to capitalize on an Association made with Apple. The will be overpriced, underpowered status symbols.
      Pandabear
      • 2 Years Ago
      Ugly and cheap
      Ace Convoy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Bout time They've been trying to pop a minivan out since I was 12 :/ Actually can't wait to see it.
      lorenzo
      • 2 Years Ago
      MPV does not mean sliding rear doors. + I dont believe they will offer a 7 seat anything. These "i" cars have been in the media so long they are starting to look tired already - especially as they become more and more massaged into something that will actually work. I still don't get how the door windows roll down with the lower door "porthole" glass - those lower door windows are going to be so small once they fit all the mechanisms above and below and to the sides of them. But you got to give it to them for being the first to actually produce this really old trick that has never been realized. I cant wait to see these things in a single color - something that does not highlight their incredibly choppy designs.
      Krishan Mistry
      • 2 Years Ago
      I dont get the point of the i8 to be honest. It has a 3 cylinder turbodiesel, and max combined output is 300ish hp, but not for very long. Yet from what I hear, it's going to cost an eye watering $200k and have performance on par with a current M3. Yes, it looks fantastic, and yes, there isnt much wrong with a 100mpg hybrid that is faster than your average garden snail, but really? Being an eco supercar, it doesnt need a 6 liter V12 with four turbos, but why not that tri turbo I6, put some real engineware under that semi see through sweet looking body. 375hp, 540lbft BEFORE electric motors do their thing (adding 100hp and instant torque). Only then could you consider charging $200k, because as it stands, an engine suitable for an I3 generator plus some bigger electric motors does not command $200k. That is a ripoff even for BMW. As it stands, the I8 should really call itself the i4 and go for less than a third of its price tag.
        ShutoSteve
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Krishan Mistry
        Thank You Krishan!!! My girlfriend works at BMW Downtown, and she's obsessed with the i8. Thinks it'll be the most beautiful dream car of everyone always and forever. Think's it's the future. Think's it's amazing... It's a design study for the road, and a bad one at that. It'll be overpriced, underperforming, and frankly, not very pleasing to the eye once it arrives. I wish she would wake up - I'm glad someone has beyond me.
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Krishan Mistry
        [blocked]
        Krishan Mistry
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Krishan Mistry
        The i3 and iMinivan could work well if, you know, they don't cost $50000 for 1
        Krishan Mistry
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Krishan Mistry
        ...100hp and economy car performance.
      illnever tell
      • 2 Years Ago
      Minivan huh... Riiight. Let's just say I'll reserve judgement for when they shoehorn that new tri-turbo diesel next to the electric motor and add an M to the name. Nothing says I wanna move people like 650 lb/ft, you know, for the discerning people mover.
      spy4
      • 2 Years Ago
      These look like HOT WHEELS play toys.
      Jonathan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Seems like a good idea. The R class sold really well... wait...
      Mappy
      • 2 Years Ago
      OK.. this may be over dramatic but. I love these designs so much, it makes me happy to be alive.
      Cat Zura
      • 2 Years Ago
      An MPV in Europe is not the same as a Minivan in the US. The purpose of most compact MPV's is greater practicality and a higher driving position, without the fuel consumption of an SUV. Despite being roomy inside, MPV's tend to have smaller footprints than sedans making them easier to park and drive through narrow European roads. It's not about sliding doors and hauling 8-person families. Having said that though, I think BMW is getting a little ahead of themselves. I don't think this "i" range is going to sell as well as BMW thinks...
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