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New i4, i5 models on the way for BMW's sub-brand?

by Drew Johnson

BMW could be readying two new models for its i sub-brand.

BMW's new "i" sub-brand is attacking both ends of the eco market, launching with the all-electric i3 city car and the performance-minded i8 sports hybrid. Although BMW will have its hands full with the launch of those two advanced products, the German automaker is said to be already be working on two new models to complete its i portfolio.

According to the latest reports, BMW is said to be readying two new models to join the i lineup - the i4 and the i5.

The i4 is said to be largely based on the i3, but will take the form of a mini sports car. It remains to be seen if the car will arrive as a coupe or roadster, but the two-seater is intended to act as an entry-level model for those that can't afford the up-market i8. The i4 could borrow the electric drivetrain from the i3, but a version of the i8's diesel-hybrid system isn't completely off the table.

The i5 is rumored to be a mid-size sedan model with coupe-like design features. The i5 will reportedly borrow the i8's drivetrain, which should translate into some decent performance figures. It remains to be seen how BMW plans to market the i5 - given it will be about the same size as the 3-Series - but the German automaker has plenty of time to iron out all the kinks - if given the green light, the i5 and i4 aren't expected to launch until the end of the decade.

The i-line could grow even before the launch of the i4 and i5, though, as BMW is said to be considering a long-wheelbase version of the i3 and a convertible variant of the i8.

References
1.'Rumormill: BMW...' view