Hybrids to become obsolete according to BMW executive

One of the largest barriers in the way of electric vehicles (EVs) becoming popular in Australia is range anxiety and the lack of fast-charging infrastructure readily available to ease this anxiety on long drives.

A solution to this issue is hybrid vehicles, which combines a battery powered electric motor with a petrol combustion engine to power the vehicle using less fuel while emitting less CO₂ then a regular combustion engine vehicle.

However, German auto manufacturer BMW believes hybrids are not the answer and have predicted the end is nigh for the range-extending technology.

In a recent presentation at the LA Auto Show, BMW e-mobility manager, Jan Freimann, told the crowd that due to technological advancements involving electric vehicles, there was no longer a need for hybrid vehicles.

“It has no future”, said Mr Freimann.

“The idea behind the range extender really helps people to get over range anxiety. With a range extender you always had the feeling like ok, I’ve got a backup solution.

“Things have changed though. With the build-up of DC fast-charging infrastructure from Ionity in Europe, Electrify America in the US, and others, there’s really no need to be afraid.”

BMW have been vocal about their move to electric vehicles, with the company earlier this year announcing the ambitious goal of putting 1 million EVs on the road by 2021.

Heavy investment into lithium-ion batteries over the last six years has greatly extended the battery range across BMW’s electric fleet. The 2019 BMW i3 currently comes with an expected range of 260km and that number is only growing with each new model. In contrast, the 2014 edition of the vehicle, the first i3 to hit the market, managed just 130km from a full battery.

The expected decline of BMW’s hybrid development marks the end of the road for the range-extended i3 REx model, which has become obsolete due to the fast-paced growth of battery technology.

The hybrid vehicle is no longer available in European markets, with North America expected to cease sales in the near future.

Original source: Gizmodo | BMW is killing its range-extending Hybrid but maybe it shouldn’t

2 Dec 2019