Development for the production BMW iNext is underway, and BMW has given us a glimpse at its upcoming Tesla fighter. As part of the development process, the German automaker has taken a prototype to its Sweden test facility to subject it to harsh winter conditions, and has shared photos of that extreme-weather test.
Testing the vehicle in cold weather allows the automaker to assess energy-recovery and chassis performance in low-traction situations and, perhaps more important, how much the cold affects the batteries, energy-management system, and electric powerplant. In most EVs, frigid weather can drop the range precipitously, especially when you use the climate-control system.
Shown in concept form last year, the BMW iNext is Bavaria’s answer to the Tesla Model X and Jaguar I-Pace. Based on the teaser shots, the styling has been toned down (we hope), and the crossover appears more conventional. The concept also had a super futuristic interior but it’s unknown if that will make it to production. When it arrives in 2021, the iNext will offer autonomous driving, connectivity, and car-sharing services, BMW says, and come standard with all-wheel drive. Production of the BMW iNext will start at the automaker’s Dingolfing facility in 2021.