BMW to focus on technology and electric cars

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As part of its 5-year strategy, the Munich-based premium maker said it would push towards extending the electric-car lineup and would also focus on bringing in more self-driving technologies.

With Mercedes and Audi coming strong from behind, BMW’s CEO Harald Kruger laid out the plan throughout 2020 to keep its leading position on the luxury market. From 2016 onwards, the 100-year-old carmaker said it would have seven green models in its range, which would be either purely electrically powered or with a plug-in hybrid setup. Further models are due to follow in the coming years, including a plug-in hybrid Mini and an open-top version of the BMW i8, while by the end of the year, the Group’s electric vehicle portfolio will be expanded to include a new BMW i3 that features increased battery capacity and extra range. The new technological trend has pushed the Bavarian carmaker to evolve its business beyond the traditional path, towards becoming a software and high-tech company. A clear focus will be placed on high definition digital maps, sensor technology, cloud technology and artificial intelligence, as BMW is committed to rapidly advance in the self-driving area.

After leading the premium segment for more than ten consecutive years, the brand plans to strengthen its position at the top end of its product portfolio, thus creating more versions of high-end models such as the new 7-Series flagship, where rates of return are at their highest. “We will be broadening our model range with the BMW X7,” Kruger said. “We are also taking an in-depth look at the additional potential of this highly attractive segment.” BMW also said the profitability growth stays the main target and it aims to achieve a pretax margin of at least 10 percent from 2017 to 2020.