Is This Really a Big Deal? BMW Praises Itself for Selling 100,000 Electrified Cars

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
is this really a big deal bmw praises itself for selling 100 000 electrified cars

In a flagrant exercise of self-congratulation, BMW announced it met its sales goal of 100,000 electrified vehicles in 2017 “as promised.” Saying that this “underlines the company’s leadership role when it comes to electro-mobility,” BMW installed a battery-themed light installation on the side of its world headquarters in Munich, Germany, that announces “the future is electric.”

While this may be true, mainstream news outlets have muddled the brand’s message by framing the EV aspect all wrong — which is probably exactly what the automaker hoped for. We’re not going to slander the company’s achievement outright; the volume does represent a nearly 60-percent increase over last year. But these aren’t just battery-electric cars, they’re hybrids, mild-hybrids, and BEVs.

We probably wouldn’t have winced if BMW had just announced it had achieved its sales goal for the year, let media pick it up, and moved on. However, the undue pageantry accompanying the news rubs us the wrong way.

“We deliver on our promises,” stated Harald Krüger, chairman of the BMW Group’s Board of Management. “This 99-meter-high signal is lighting the way into the era of electro-mobility. Selling 100,000 electrified cars in one year is an important milestone, but this is just the beginning for us. Since the introduction of the BMW i3 2013, we’ve delivered over 200,000 electrified cars to our customers and by 2025, we will offer 25 electrified models to our customers. Our early focus on electro-mobility has made this success possible — and electro-mobility will continue to be my measure for our future success.”

That’s all well and good but Nissan surpassed the 100,000-unit mark with the all-electric Leaf in January of 2014. Nine years earlier, Toyota sold 107,897 examples of the Prius in the United States alone. These days, practically everyone is selling hybrids or BEVs and global plug-in volume has more than tripled since 2013.

For BMW, electrified vehicles make up about 7 percent of its total sales in Western Europe and the United States. While not bad, the brand’s most eco-friendly model, the i3, has seen its share of the market dwindle in North America every year since 2015.

Granted, Bavarian Motor Works isn’t the only company that conflates “electrified” with electric cars. This is a sin that almost everyone is guilty of. However, not everyone is building high-tech monuments to themselves as a result. Perhaps the manufacturer was simply trying to psych itself up for the future. In addition to making plans to implement mild-hybrid technology across its portfolio — which should only just barely qualify as an electric vehicle — BMW also intends to field 12 fully-electric models by 2025 with a ranges of up to 430 miles.

[Image: BMW Group]

Join the conversation
2 of 27 comments
  • Dukeisduke Dukeisduke on Dec 20, 2017

    Broke: The Ultimate Driving Machine. Woke: The Ultimate Washing Machine.

  • Vehic1 Vehic1 on Dec 20, 2017

    Predictable outcry from the 35% of dinosaurs still with the White House, as it attempts to provide coal-burning internal combustion automobiles to lead the USA into the future - and save the smidgen of the US economy allied with such horse-and-buggy industries.

  • Ollicat I have a Spyder. The belt will last for many years or 60,000-80,000 miles. Not really a worry.
  • Redapple2 Cadillac and racing. Boy those 2 go together dont they? What a joke. Up there with opening a coffee shop in NYC. EvilGM be clowning. Again.
  • Jbltg Rear bench seat does not match the front buckets. What's up?
  • Theflyersfan The two Louisville truck plants are still operating, but not sure for how much longer. I have a couple of friends who work at a manufacturing company in town that makes cooling systems for the trucks built here. And they are on pins and needles wondering if or when they get the call to not go back to work because there are no trucks being made. That's what drives me up the wall with these strikes. The auto workers still get a minimum amount of pay even while striking, but the massive support staff that builds components, staffs temp workers, runs the logistics, etc, ends up with nothing except the bare hope that the state's crippled unemployment system can help them keep afloat. In a city where shipping (UPS central hub and they almost went on strike on August 1) and heavy manufacturing (GE Appliance Park and the Ford plants) keeps tens of thousands of people employed, plus the support companies, any prolonged shutdown is a total disaster for the city as well. UAW members - you're not getting a 38% raise right away. That just doesn't happen. Start a little lower and end this. And then you can fight the good fight against the corner office staff who make millions for being in meetings all day.
  • Dusterdude The "fire them all" is looking a little less unreasonable the longer the union sticks to the totally ridiculous demands ( or maybe the members should fire theit leadership ! )