Tech

The stylish and electric white BMW i4 is the car I’ve been waiting for

The white car is a BMW i4. The red car is a BMW 430i.

Apart from the paint color, they look the same.

Sit in the driver's seat and everything is natural

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Sit in the driver’s seat and everything is naturalCredit: Mark Fagelson
As you would expect from an electric motor, power is instant, quiet and silent

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As you would expect from an electric motor, power is instant, quiet and silentCredit: Mark Fagelson

Both are exactly what you would think of a BMW: Stylish, well finished, sporty yet practical. And just great driving. But they are different.

The 430i runs on gasoline, with a continuously variable automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive.
The i4 is also rear-wheel drive. But it runs on electricity. No exhaust, see? It’s a car I’ve been waiting for.

There are many round electric crossovers around. And lots of small trams. But sporty electric family cars are hard to find. Yes, there’s the Tesla Model 3 and Polestar 2. Their rocket power and widescreen interiors will impress your friends.

But once you’ve been surprised by the acceleration, the driving is a bit unsatisfying. And if all you want to do is turn on the heater or change the track, the touchscreen controls get annoying.

While the BMW i4 is very good. . . a BMW. I’ll talk about that first, then the electrical part later. Sit in the driver’s seat and everything feels natural.

It’s low, snug, and smartly trimmed. You can control most electronic devices using the familiar iDrive system, although there’s also a touchscreen.

Smooth and silent

It’s quick. It actually accelerates faster than the petrol 430i.

As you would expect from an electric motor, the power is instantaneous, quiet and silent. The suspension is just great. It steers like an extension of your brain, confident and precise.

It’s magnetically tailored to the road, with all the grip you need. However, it’s also playful, giving you subtle but clear feedback.

Sports car with lots of hard and bumpy seats. But this is serene. It will plunge straight down a rough B-road, glide smoothly over the highway, and do a good job of quelling potholes in town.

Now, the power bit. On official testing, it ran for 340 miles on a single charge, but on the frigid highways, I got around 240.

Mixed driving gives you more and in the summer you can expect 300 hours. Those are good numbers for an electric car. Conventional EV disclaimer: Honestly, if you can’t charge at or very close to home, you probably shouldn’t buy an electric vehicle yet.

The suspension is just great. It steers like an extension of your brain, confident and precise.

But if you can, a full charge will be £15. Less if you use the cheap nighttime juice. The slower, noisier 430i will cost at least £50 in gas for the same distance.

And the company-car tax difference is crippling. A 40% taxpayer would pay £6,665 for the 430i. But the £427 price tag on the i4.

As good as the 430i is, though, it looks like this red car might make you blush.

It's low, neat and smartly trimmed, and you can control most of the electronics with the familiar iDrive system, though there's also a touchscreen.

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It’s low, neat and smartly trimmed, and you can control most of the electronics with the familiar iDrive system, though there’s also a touchscreen.Credit: Mark Fagelson
It's quick, it actually accelerates faster than the red 430i petrol

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It’s quick, it actually accelerates faster than the red 430i petrolCredit: Mark Fagelson

Main information: BMW i4 eDRIVE40 M SPORT

Price: £53,405
The battery: 81kWh
Power: 340 hp, 430 Nm
0-62mph: 5.7 seconds
Max speed: 118mph
Limit: 337 miles
CO2: 0g/km
Outside: Now

SURE MASK. . . AND SO WILL ROSSI

The first half of January is always a bit of an odd time for cyclists. As I write this, everything outside has a smooth frosting. Riding in this weather is doable but not much fun.

There’s still two-wheeled action going on there, though. British racer Sam Sunderland just won the Dakar Rally on Gas Gas.

British racer Sam Sunderland just won the Dakar Rally on Gas Gas

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British racer Sam Sunderland just won the Dakar Rally on Gas GasCredit: EPA

After nearly 8,000 km spread over two weeks, the Bournemouth guy finished first in the most extreme terrain race on the planet for the second time in his career.

Speaking of drivers, this week it was also reported that Valentino Rossi has signed up to compete in the 2022 GT world championship in an Audi R8. He has his eye on winning the series and I have no doubt that he will be at the end of the series.

More importantly, this means he will race at Brands Hatch in Kent on Sunday May 1. Rossi has never raced at Brands Hatch and in fact he will be in a car, not a car. bike definitely won’t let me down. I’ll be cheering him on as well.

I received a copy of his all-inclusive race book this week and cannot recommend it enough. It was written by Mat Oxley, who in my opinion is the best racing journalist on the planet. It’s like reading the academic report of the most famous kid in school, written by the most amazing teacher that everyone likes. If you have money left over for Christmas, spend it on this.

In the field of road bikes, this week Ducati announced that 2021 is going to be a bumper year for them. They sold a total of 59,447 units, with growth in every country they sold. The awesome Multistrada V4 is their best-selling bike, followed by the Scrambler and then the Monster.

Ducati sold 30% more bikes in the UK than in 2020, with 2,941 units. So it’s cold and wet outside but it’s not all bad. Unless you’re doing Dry January like me.

Brake news

Rachel Burgess

  • OFF after a big year for sales in the UK and Europe, Tesla will unveil product refurbishment plans before the end of this month. We can finally know when the long-awaited Cybertruck, Roadster and Semi will be released.
  • RENAULT is the latest carmaker to confirm that it will go all-electric in Europe by 2030, stepping up its previous plan to reach 90% EV sales by the end of the decade. The French company plans to launch 24 new vehicles by 2025, expand its electric vehicle offering and reinvent Alpine as an electric-only performance brand.
  • The all-electric PEUGEOT’S 308, due out in 2023, will be sold as a trapdoor and property with a range of approximately 250 miles. Ditto for the new Vauxhall Astra.
  • The next Range Rover Sport – quickly becoming one of the firm’s most popular models – is being prepared for 2023, with a full-fat 616bhp SVR variant using a powered 4.4-litre V8 Original from BMW. An electric version will follow. More details in this week’s Autocar magazine, due out Wednesday.
Tesla postpones Cybertruck production to 2023

https://www.thesun.co.uk/motors/17337353/bmw-i4-review-electric-stylish-white/ The stylish and electric white BMW i4 is the car I’ve been waiting for

Caroline Bleakley

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