You have to give BMW credit. The brand has played a major role in taking electric vehicles from kind of boring to tons of fun. If you had asked us years ago, none of us would have thought that a stylish and sporty electric car like the BMW i8 would even exist, let alone be a popular production model. This week, BMW continued its legacy of EV excellence by bringing two new plug-in hybrids to the LA Auto Show for American debuts.
The first model is the BMW X5 xDrive40e SUV, which first debuted in March of this year. This SUV is the first of BMW’s X models to be available with a plug-in hybrid powertrain. The model doesn’t lose any of the appeal of the traditional vehicle in its transition to electric. The lithium-ion battery is stored out of the way under the luggage compartment, and several eDrive settings mean that you can drive the vehicle to optimize fuel savings or power.
The BMW 330e Plug-In Hybrid made its American debut at the LA Auto Show. This hybrid is an additional trim level of the BMW 3 Series and first was announced in September. When designing this hybrid, the engineers wanted to make sure that the performance didn’t lag behind its gasoline-powered counterparts. To accomplish that, the electric motor supports the main engine with an electric boost of torque up to 184 lb-ft. This hybrid also has three drive settings to help owners navigate the road ahead in the mode that best suits their driving needs at that time.
For more information about the LA Auto Show and the vehicles that made debuts there, check out our dedicated topic page.