BMW iX: Everything we know so far

BMW iX electric car
(Image credit: BMW)
BMW iX xDrive 50

Release Date: Available now
Price: From $84,100
493 bhp, 2 motor, AWD
Battery range:
324 miles (EPA)
0 to 60 mph: 
4.4 seconds
Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Harman/Kardon stereo, iDrive operating system and voice assistant, optional 5G and Wi-Fi hotpot

The BMW iX xDrive 40 and xDrive 50 both feature a twin-motor, four-wheel-drive setup that'll take them from 0-62 mph in super-quick time then on to a top speed of 124 mph. But they can also lay claim to being among the greenest mass-produced cars yet, thanks to an array of environmentally friendly features.

Here's everything we know about the BMW iX series so far, including the pricing, specs, release date, range and more. 

BMW iX: Release and pricing

The BMW iX xDrive 40 arrived towards the end of 2021, but that isn't heading to the U.S. anytime soon. Instead American drivers will have to wait for xDrive50, which arrived in mid-2022.

The xDrive 50 prices are confirmed to start at $84,100 in the U.S., while the performance-tuned iX M60 starts at $108,900. This gives the iX something of an advantage over the Tesla Model X. Tesla's premium electric SUV starts at $120,990 and rises to $1238,990 for the most expensive version. 

BMW iX: Design and interior

The BMW iX has already turned some heads with its questionable exterior design. Particularly when you compare it to the smooth and curved edges on a lot of other all-electric SUVs.

 It's a lot more rough and angled than some people might like, but fortunately the interior of the car is a totally different story. 

BMW iX interior and leather seats

(Image credit: BMW)

In typical electric vehicle style BMW has included a a large touchscreen control panel, alongside a panoramic sunroof that features electrochromic shading. In other words you can flick a switch to either tint or clear the glass, as your needs see fit. It's not a trick you see on a lot of cars, but it is something we'd like to see more of.

Powered front seats are heated, and are available in leather, faux leather, or microfiber cloth.

BMW iX: Power and performance

The iX xDrive 40 and iX xDrive 50 are BMW's first ever electric SUVs, and both will be seriously powerful. Both cars are expected to offer all wheel drive as standard, with a single motor on each axle.

The entry-level xDrive 40 will produce 296bhp (240 kW) and will be able to handle the 0-62 mph sprint in a little over 6 seconds, while the even beefier xDrive 50 will serve up 493bhp (370kW) and reach 62 mph in under 5 seconds. 

That's impressively quick, if not quite as spectacular as the Tesla Model X, which can hit 60 mph in either 3.8 or 2.5 seconds, depending on the model.

BMW iX in white on mountain roads

(Image credit: BMW)

BMW iX: Range and charging

In terms of range, the xDrive50 has a 100 kWh battery that's good for a 373-mile trip, while the 40 has to make do with a 70 kWh cell that will conk out after 249 miles. The Model X, by comparison, can go for 340 miles, or 360 in its Long Range guise.

Both the iX cars can go from 10-80 percent of charge in a little under 40 minutes, though the xDrive 50 is faster overall in this regard: its 200 kW charging can take it to 75 miles in 10 minutes, whereas the xDrive 40 has a 150 kW charger and will add 56 miles in the same time.

U.S. iX and i4 owners will also be able to enjoy complimentary access to Electrify America's charging network. Owners will be entitled to two years of 30-minute charging sessions from the date of purchase —all at no additional cost. Electrify America chargers can also be located from the in-car navigation system of the myBMWapp.

BMW iX in white driving close to mountain edge

(Image credit: BMW)

BMW iX: Intelligence panel and iDrive

As you'd expect for a modern EV, the iX series is packed with tech. That large kidney-shaped front grille functions as an "intelligence panel", which houses the cameras, radar and sensors it uses for its automated-driving systems. BMW says it will process 20 times the amount of data compared to previous models.

Inside, the iX range will be the first BMW to use the brand's new iDrive operating system, complete with onboard digital assistant.

BMW iX intelligence panel and steering wheel by the dea

(Image credit: BMW)

But impressive though the cars look, BMW seems most excited about their green credentials. 

BMW iX: Greenest SUVs ever?

The xDrive 40 and xDrive 50 are the result of "an all-encompassing approach to sustainability" that covers every step of the production process. Neither uses any rare-earth materials and BMW itself procures the cobalt and lithium used in their batteries, to ensure that “environmental and sustainability standards are observed."

The batteries are manufactured exclusively using green power and BMW says that overall production process emissions for the iX range were cut by 18%. The interior, meanwhile, uses a "high proportion of secondary aluminum and recycled plastic" included recovered fishing nets, plus FSC-certified wood and other natural materials. In total, the iX contains 132 pounds of recycled plastic.

BMW claims that over the course of 125,000 miles, the iX xDrive40 has a 45 percent lower global warming potential than a comparable diesel car.

BMW ix in gray parked by a building

(Image credit: BMW)

BMW iX: Outlook

There's still a bit to be learned about both the BMX iX xDrive 40 and xDrive 50, so we can't make any major judgements right now. Questionable exterior aside, BMW is no stranger to the world of the best electric cars, so we have high hopes for both iX models. 

Plus it's commendable that the company is aiming to make the production process cleaner and more sustainable. Whether it's fair or not, the electric car industry has got a lot of flack for how production can impact the environment — particularly with the mining of lithium and rare earth metals.

We're still interested to see what autonomous and smart driving features BMW has in store as well. High-end electric cars have been going all in with Level 2, and potentially Level 3 autonomy recently. While they're nowhere near capable of true driver-free autonomous driving, it's still progress towards that goal. BMW knows that, and hopefully has a few things still to show off.

Marc McLaren

Formerly Editor in Chief (U.K.) on Tom’s Guide, Marc oversaw all gaming, streaming, audio, TV, entertainment, how-to and cameras coverage, and was also responsible for the site’s U.K.-focused output. He is now U.K. Editor in Chief on TechRadar. Marc previously edited the tech website Stuff and has tested and written about phones, tablets, wearables, streaming boxes, smart home devices, Bluetooth speakers, headphones, games, TVs, cameras and much more. He also spent years on a music magazine, where his duties mainly involved spoiling other people’s fun, and on a car magazine. An avid photographer, he likes nothing better than taking pictures of very small things (bugs, his daughters) or very big things (distant galaxies). When he gets time, he also enjoys gaming (console and mobile), cycling and attempting to watch as much sport as any human can. He's also fallen in love with Wordle over the past six months and is the author of our today's Wordle answer column, in which he supplies hints and strategy tips for the mega-popular word game. Given he's completed every single Wordle so far and only lost once, and analyzed every Wordle answer in search of patterns, he's well qualified to help you safeguard your streak.