New Model News

Fresh BMW Concept i4 champions electric driving, grand touring

The BMW Concept i4will evolve to become the new i4 electric sedan.

Photo courtesy of BMW

With a giant buck-toothed grille and all-electric powertrain, the BMW Concept i4 made its debut this week showing off what a future BMW i4 will look like. BMW has already said that the i4 will enter production in 2021. When it does so, it will be BMW's first luxury midsize electric vehicle (EV).

The thoroughly modern grand tourer has a strong stance and questionable fascia choices. It features a long wheelbase and the type of fastback roofline that makes German automakers keen to call it a "coupe" despite the fact that it has four doors. Its midsize proportions are similar to the current BMW 5 Series.

BMW Concept i4

Photo courtesy of BMW

Its enormous grille no longer serves a cooling purpose but rather houses technology required to keep the car on the road. The Concept i4 is shown in a Frozen Light Copper paint job.

At the rear, there are long, L-shaped taillights and vertical air intakes. Because it is an EV, there are no tailpipes.

Throughout the exterior there are blue tinted design elements that are common on modern vehicles denoting their electrified powertrain. It has unique wheels that were designed just for the concept.

The four-door tourer has an EPA-estimated range for 270 miles, is able to achieve 530 horsepower, and can get from zero tp 62 mph in 4.0 seconds. BMW says that its top speed is in excess of 124 mph. Its battery weighs roughly 550 kilograms and has an energy content of around 80 kWh.

There are three drive modes: Core, Sport, and Efficient. BMW says that these modes give a hint at what is to come in the i4.

BMW has orientated the cabin of the Concept i4 for the driver. A new BMW Curved Display pairs with the steering wheel and features technology that promises to make infotainment tech functionality more intuitive. Like the Cadillac curved OLED screen, the Concept i4's display is non-reflective and does not require a shroud.

There are almost no buttons on the minimalistic center stack. Nearly every operation relies on touch control, including the functionality of a traditional shifter. Gold Bronze accent strips finish off the interior with a high level of sophistication.

BMW highlights the large amount of head- and legroom in the midsize model. BMW has equipped the model with sport seats in the front and rear.

Look for the true version of the BMW Concept i4 will likely be revealed later this year or early next.

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Polestar currently operates four showrooms in the U.S.

Photo courtesy of Polestar

Polestar, an electric performance car brand, will be opening 15 new sales locations in the U.S. by the end of 2021. Called Polestar Spaces, the showrooms are more in line with what Tesla offers and less like a traditional auto dealership.

Each Polestar Space features minimalist Scandinavian-like design, pulling together the heritage of the company with a modern sales environment. Each location is staffed by non-commissioned Polestar Specialists. Test drives can be coordinated on-site or at home.

In the next few months, locations in Austin, Texas; Boston; Denver, Seattle; South Florida; and Washington D.C. will open. Those new showrooms will be established in connection with established retailer groups in the area. Additional information regarding the D.C. and Florida locations is expected soon.

2021 Polestar 2 The fastback Polestar 2 is a head-turner. Photo courtesy of Polestar

The second-half of 2021 will welcome the opening of additional showrooms in Atlanta; Central and South New Jersey; Connecticut; Dallas; Detroit; Minneapolis; Phoenix; and Orange County, California.

Specific showroom details are available at Polestar.com/Spaces.

"In 2019 we stated our goal of servicing 85% of the addressable EV market within a year of the Polestar 2 launch," said Gregor Hembrough, Head of Polestar in North America. "With these 2021 appointments, we will accomplish that and more- especially with our free pickup and delivery servicing within 150 miles of a brick-and-mortar Polestar location."

Polestar Spaces are already open in Los Angeles (Santa Monica) and Manhattan, plus two locations in the San Francisco Bay Area (Corte Madera and Santa Clara).

The automaker currently offers the Polestar 2 for sale in the U.S. AutomotiveMap recently had the opportunity to test drive the car for review.

It was recently confirmed that the Polestar Precept concept is headed to production. The concept version of the car is noted for its sustainable materials and minimalist design.

Additionally, Polestar and Koenigsegg are working on a project.

Further markets for expansion will be announced later in 2021.

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A diamond mesh grille fronts the 2022 Kia K8.

PhPhoto courtesy of Kia Motorsoto courtesy of Kia Motors

Goodbye, Cadenza. Hello, K8. The Kia Cadenza is one of those cars that is easy forgotten about (if you ever knew about it in the first place) and frequently passed over in favor of the Toyota Avalon or the like. Still, most every automotive journalist who has driven it likes it.

So, Kia's taking the lessons learned from the Cadenza and some from the K5 and Stinger, and rolling them into a new large sedan, the 2022 Kia K8. This week the company unveiled the first official images of the car ahead of its debut. This is the first vehicle named the K8 in Kia history.

2022 Kia K8 The K8's headlights have integrated turn signals.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

2022 Kia K8

"Following our recent company rebrand, we keep moving toward our new brand values with a new model – the K8. This modern sedan has been designed with innovation and elegance at its very core," said Karim Habib, Senior Vice President and Head of Kia Global Design Center. "While paying homage to the K7, the K8 looks to the future. Its progressive exterior takes on character and emotion, and combines those qualities with an expressive looking front and a dynamic swooping rear, giving the K8 a high-quality, premium presence that takes direct inspiration from some of the world's most technically advanced yachts."

As seen in the photos, the car wears Kia's new logo on its badging, and has design lines reminiscent of the vehicles it has taken lessons from. There's a frameless tire nose grille with diamond lattice, turn signals integrated into the headlights, an elongated side profile, chrome finish along the bottom of the doors, and a roofline that trails off into the trunk. It's all very much from the Kia sedan lineup.

Kia promises that the car will have a "first class" interior that establishes "new benchmarks in premium quality". The sedan will deliver a high-performance driving experience yet be comfortable to ride in, according to Kia messaging.

The rear of the Kia K8 features elongated taillights.Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The Kia K8 is expected to arrive in showrooms later this year but the U.S. might not get it until after it's arrived in Korea and Europe.

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