BMW CEO confirms hybrid 3-Series, FWD subcompact

Just as if you couldn”t get any more news about new hybrid powertrains coming out, BMW AG has just recently confirmed plans to offer the next generation F30 3-Series and their new front-wheel drive subcompact with hybrid powerplants.

“We will continue to update our model range,” said Dr. Norbert Reithofer, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG. “This includes other hybrid offerings such as the new BMW 5-Series Sedan with hybrid drive starting in 2011. The next generation of the BMW 3-Series will also include hybrid models.”

The F30 is aimed to be released in 2012, starting with the sedan, with the Touring, Coupe and Convertible versions following short after. The new front-wheel drive subcompact is BMW”s next project. It will be contributing to the supermini-segment and will sit under the current 1-Series. This suggests that the new model might be called the 2-Series.

“In the future, we intend to participate even more in the growth of the small car segment,” said Reithofer. “This is why we are planning to offer smaller BMW models ““ positioned below the BMW 3-Series ““ with front-wheel drive. These models with front-wheel drive will also be made available to our customers with a hybrid engine.”

Quite interesting after James May quoted the heifers at BMW who said that front-wheel drive was “the work of Satan.” There are also plans for BMW to collaborate with PSA Peugeot-Citroen Group for development of the new FWD Hybrid models.

“Our cooperation is focused on developing and producing components for hybrid front-wheel drives. Additional economies of scale will be achieved by pooling certain purchasing activities. I am talking specifically about e-drives, generators, and power electronics that control the interaction between a battery and electric drive,” Reithofer added.

FWD BMWs may see its market debut as early as 2012. BMW with FWD? We can wait.

– By: Chris Chin

Source: BMW (via CarScoop)