BMW debuts electric i5 with gaming, hands-free driving and lets you change lanes with your eyes
After teasing glimpses of its first all-electric 5 Series for weeks, BMW has globally debuted the first two available trims of the i5, including an M performance version with 590 horsepower. The German automaker has introduced a lot of new technology in its latest generation of its long-running series, including in-car gaming, a range conservation mode, and eye activated lane changes.
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Finally! The all-electric BMW 5 Series has arrived
We’ve been talking about an all-electric 5 series for six years now, but it wasn’t until recently that BMW began hinting at its inevitable arrival.
As a combustion model, the 5 series has been a staple in BMW’s lineup since 1972 and remains the German automaker’s second best-selling vehicle behind the 3 series. We saw BMW kick off its all-electric models with the i3, and the automaker has used that now-defunct EV as an appetizer to larger, better-performing models, like the revamped i4 sport coupe, iX SUV, and i7 sedan.
For months now, we’ve known an all-electric version of the 5 Series was in the works alongside plug-in and combustion variants, but we didn’t really get a feel for what to expect in the new i5 until late April when the sedan was seen enduring summer testing. Still, those images were camo’d.
Last week, we got our first genuine image of the all-electric BMW i5 which we can now recognize as the eDrive40 (seen below). Today however, BMW has pulled the entire veil off both all-electric 5 Series variants, and there’s a lot to get excited about if you’re a fan of the brand.
The electric BMW i5 is longer, wider, taller, and lit up
Boy are German automakers passionate about their work. Their pride in new features is apparent in their consistently “detailed” press releases that leave no tidbits of information left to the imagination. There’s only so much we can cover before you scroll on, so we recommend checking out BMW’s latest press release for all the details of the i5.
The new lineup of the 5 Series is larger all around compared to its previous generation. Its length has been stretched by 3.4 inches to 199.2, it’s wider by 1.3 inches (74.8 in total), and it’s taller by 1.4 inches (59.6 inches in all). As a result of the length, the 5’s wheelbase has been increased by 0.8 inches to 117.9, adding a tad of interior seating space, particularly in the back.
At launch, BMW will provide two all-electric variants of the i5 that feature the automaker’s fifth-generation eDrive technology. Customers can choose from a single-motor RWD i5 eDrive40, or an M60 xDrive performance model, positioned as the pinnacle of the entire 5 Series range.
The M60 variant especially showcases some new exterior features joining the 5 Series, including a black front apron with large air intakes, a grill featuring horizontal slats and the recognizable M performance logo, side skirts and exterior mirror caps finished in high-gloss black, and 19″ M light-alloy wheels.
BMW has also introduced an M Sport Package available to add to all versions of the 5 Series that includes an illuminated kidney grill framed in high-gloss black (seen above), M Shadowline headlights, and a rear spoiler. Customers can also add red calipers to the brakes if they just co choose.
Game on! The 5 Series gets an interior facelift
Moving inward, BMW has introduced a new fully-digital curved display which the automaker states now “represents the heart of the interior redesign.” The electric i5 models will come standard with a new Interaction Bar complete with ambient lighting in the instrument panel and door areas, plus a new gear selector switch in the center console.
The new frameless curved display is comprised of a 12.3″ information screen behind the steering wheel and a 14.9″ control display, merged into one high-resolution unit powered by BMW’s latest generation Operating System 8.5 – complete with a new graphic display, start screen, and “QuickSelect” access.
BMW says OS 8.5 offers more digital information and entertainment to future drivers, including new streaming programs and for the first time ever in a 5 Series – in-car gaming thanks to the AirConsole platform.
While the EV is stationary, the driver and their passengers can connect their smartphones using a QR code on the curved display, and use them as controllers to begin gaming instantly. BMW says AirConsole already has about 20 game titles including Go Kart Go, which looks similar enough to MarioKart that I’m surprised legal action has not been taken.
Anyways, you can game while you charge, nice!
Hands-free driving and eye activated lane changes
One of the cooler features on the upcoming electric i5 is BMW’s optional Driving Assistance Professional package, which includes Highway Assistant. This ADAS features enables the i5 driver to operate hands-free at speeds up to 85 mph where conditions and speed limits allow, as long as they keep their eyes up.
The driver’s attention is continuously monitored by an interior camera, and they are fully responsible for driving and anything that happens on the road, even when Highway Assistant is activated. That means this is still a Level 2 autonomy feature at best.
BMW has utilized its eye monitoring technology in a new and unique way that alleviates the need to activate a turn signal in order to initiate a proposed hands-free lane change. When BMW begins deliveries, electric i5 owners will be able to confirm the movement by simply peering over to the respective sideview mirror.
The i5 can recognize the visual cue, then perform the lane change at speeds again, up to 85 mph (traffic conditions and speed limits permitting). Can’t wait to try this feature out.
Specs, pricing, and an introductory video
Alright, it’s been a journey to get here, but let’s dig into how these two versions of BMW’s first all-electric 5 Series break down. As we previously mentioned, initial customers will get to choose between the standard RWD i5 and the dual-motor M variant.
The i5 M60 xDrive as well as an eDrive40 donning the optional M Sport package, come equipped with a shift paddle left of the steering marked “Boost” that can be tapped to activate the electric BMW’s full drive power and trigger maximum acceleration. The i5’s electric sound design also automatically shifts to “sport” to add to the sensory driving experience.
The single motor in the rear of the electric BMW i5 eDrive40 delivers a maximum power output of 335 hp and of 295 lb-ft maximum torque (317 lb-ft when the Sport Boost or Launch Control function is activated). Its acceleration from 0-60 mph is laggard 5.7 seconds and its max speed has been electronically limited by BMW to 120 mph. The automaker also described what the i5 M60 is packing:
Two highly integrated drive units on the front and rear axles, in which the electric motor, power electronics, and transmission are compactly combined in a common housing, form an electric all-wheel drive system that enables the BMW i5 M60 xDrive to deliver captivating dynamic performance. The electric motor acting on the rear wheels generates a maximum power output of 335 hp, while the motor at the front axle produces 257 hp. The total system torque generated by both motors is 549 lb-ft, or 605 lb-ft when M Sport Boost or the M Launch Control function is activated.
The new BMW i5 M60 is significantly quicker than the eDrive40, accelerating 0-60 mph in 3.7 seconds. Its max speed has been electronically limited to 143 mph when equipped with performance tires (130 mph with all-season tires).
Like the motors themselves, BMW’s battery packs also make up its fifth-generation iDrive unit and consist of four modules with 72 battery cells each and three modules with twelve cells each. The modules combine for a usable capacity of 84.3 kWh and deliver the following estimated ranges and charge rates:
- The i5 eDrive40 is estimated to travel up to 295 miles on a single charge on 19″ wheels (BMW estimated, not EPA)
- i5 M60 xDrive delivers a (BMW) estimated 256 miles of range
- Combined Charging Unit enables Level 2 AC charging up to 11 kW
- The i5 can reach a rate of 205 kW on a DC fast charger, replenishing from 10% to 80% in about 30 minutes
To help conserve range during dire situations, BMW has introduced a new drive system function owners can activate called Max Range. In this mode, drive power and top speed are restricted, while comfort functions are reduced to conserve battery power. Per BMW:
Max Range mode is primarily for critical situations where drivers are unable to recharge mid-journey where they had originally planned and must continue to an alternative charging point. The Max Range mode can be selected using the control display’s touchscreen functionality, the iDrive Controller, or voice commands to the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant. It can also be deactivated by full-throttle acceleration (kickdown), engaging the M Sport Boost function, or switching the window defrost to maximum.
Still with us? Almost done, promise.
The new all-electric i5 models will be be built at Plant Dingolfing, BMW’s largest European plant – which has been home to Series 5 production since its birth 50 years ago. The global market launch will begin in October 2023 with the all-electric versions and will be followed by plug-in hybrid variants in the US in 2024. Here’s how initial pricing will break down.
- i5 eDrive40 – $66,800 (+ $995 destination and handling)
- i5 M60 xDrive – $84,100 (+ $995 destination and handling)
Want to see more? Check out the introductory video of the all-electric i5 posted to BMW’s YouTube page today.
Are you into the first electric 5 Series? Is the eye activated lane change a gimmick or the future of hands-free? Tell us what you think in the comments!
NIO sets YTD order intake record after new ES6 launch in May
NIO’s new ES6 already looks to be a key factor as the EV maker looks to expand its brand and compete in the booming Chinese electric vehicle market. According to Morgan Stanley, NIO hit a new year-to-date order intake record aided by the launch of the second-generation ES6.
After launching what many consider its most important model to date two weeks ago with its second-gen ES6 electric SUV, NIO has seen increased interest in the brand.
Although NIO was the only major EV maker in China to see a monthly sales decline in May, delivering 6,155 models (down 8% from April), the company has a plan to turn things around… and it already looks to be paying off.
Although the ES6 has been the company’s top seller since launching in 2018 as a more affordable option to the ES8, NIO knew it was time for an upgrade.
The EV maker is focusing on its NT 2.0 EV platform vehicles, including the recently launched EC7, second-generation ES8, ET5, and ES7 models. All NT 2.0 models are built on the NIO Adam supercomputer using four Nvidia DRIVE Orin system-on-chips (SoCs).
New ES6 boosts NIO’s order intake to record YTD high
A research report released last week from the Chinese consumer behavior research agency CarFans highlighted consumer behavior in NIO stores within the first 72 hours of launching (May 24 to May 27) the new ES6.
The report found each NIO store received 90 pre-orders on average, with around 20 confirmations that included a down payment.
With roughly 330 stores, that’s around 29,700 pre-orders or 6,600 confirmations. For just three days, that’s pretty impressive for a premium SUV.
Although the cancellation rate is expected to be around 10%, the new ES6 is already leading to a new order intake record for the year, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Tim Hsiao (via CnEVPost).
In a research note on June 5, Hsiao said the firm had been tracking feedback from startups’ major sales channels in Tier 1 cities since last year to analyze the market. The team shared data that confirmed the new ES6 accounted for 35% to 40% of new orders in May, suggesting a meaningful impact on inflow as it launched in the final week of the month.
NIO’s overall traffic at flagship stores rose 30% to 40% month-over-month, with momentum continuing into early June. The new ES6 is NIO’s cheapest electric SUV, starting at RMB 368,000 ($51,614).
Meanwhile, the team said that despite customer traffic at the stores it tracks returning to levels seen this February, they are still “20% below last September’s level when the company rolled out ET5.”
Vineyard Wind 1’s first turbine blades arrive in the US
The first turbine blades for Vineyard Wind 1, the US’s first commercial-scale offshore wind farm, have arrived at the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal in Massachusetts.
The $3.5 billion offshore wind farm will feature 62 GE Haliade-X 13-megawatt (MW) turbines spaced one nautical mile apart. The first turbine blades – each one 107 meters (351 feet) long – arrived at the Port of New Bedford (pictured above) from GE’s production site in Nazaire, France, on the heavy load vessel Rolldock Sky. (And no, it’s not lost on us, either, that wind turbine blades arrived on a fossil fuel vessel. May we collectively resolve that ironic problem ASAP.)
The turbine sections will be assembled at the terminal before they’re shipped out and installed this summer.
The 800 MW Vineyard Wind 1 is 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket and 35 miles from mainland Massachusetts. It’s a 50-50 joint venture between clean energy company Avangrid and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) funds CI II and CI III.
Vineyard Wind I will supply clean energy for over 400,000 homes and businesses in Massachusetts and reduce carbon emissions by over 1.6 million tons per year. It’s expected to come online at the end of 2023.
Read more: This US offshore wind farm is piloting a bubble curtain – what it is and why it’s cool
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Save energy with a 4-pack of Govee dual Wi-Fi smart plugs that can automate lights, fans, more at $30 (25% off) in New Green Deals
Using smart plugs can lead to more than just a convenient home. It can lead to a more energy-efficient home. Simply program a smart plug to turn off the lights, fan, or even a heater (in the winter) and you’ll immediately begin saving electricity. Every little bit counts, and depending on what you automate, can lead to multiple kW of savings every month, and dozens per year. Right now we’re seeing a 4-pack of dual Wi-Fi smart plugs on sale for just $30, which saves 25% and marks a new low that we’ve tracked. We also have a wide selection of Tesla and e-bike discounts in today’s New Green Deals, so you won’t want to miss that either.
Head below for other New Green Deals that we’ve found today and of course Electrek’s best EV buying and leasing deals. Also
Automate lamps, fans, heaters, and more with Govee’s dual smart plug
Govee’s official Amazon storefront is offering a 4-pack of its Wi-Fi Dual Smart Plugs on sale for $29.99 shipped once you clip the on-page coupon. Today’s deal delivers a full 25% in savings and comes in at $10 off. Not only that, but it’s $2 below the previous best pricing and marks a new low that we’ve tracked. Smart plugs have a lot of uses around your home, but one you might not think of is the energy saving implications of using them. Today’s deal is actually pretty unique, too, as it’s a 4-pack of dual smart plugs for just $7.50 each, and each one is individually-controlled, meaning you’ll have eight smart outlets in your home once picking the kit up.
All you’ll have to do is plug in various items in your home and the smart plug can begin automating your life. One great thing to use smart plugs for is lamps or other lights around the house. Simply program it to turn them off when you leave and on when you come back home. Not sure how much power that’ll save? Well, even if you’re using LEDs, most bulbs are around 10W or so of power draw. Leave that light on for 10 hours throughout the day, and you’ve now used 100W of electricity. Multiply that by a few lights in your house, five days a week, and you’re burning several kW of power every month for lighting a home that nobody’s in. On top of that, you can use smart plugs to turn on things like mini air conditioners, fans, or heaters depending on the season, ensuring those aren’t left on when nobody’s home, either. The smart plugs here can be controlled by the Govee app as well as either Alexa or Assistant, allowing for full programming as well as voice commands.
Leave behind gas and oil when you use Greenworks’ 80V electric mower
Are you tired of having to remember to get gas for the mower when it comes time for summer lawn chores? Well, Amazon has you covered. Right now the Greenworks Pro 80V 21-inch Cordless Electric Lawn Mower is on sale for $372.81 shipped. You’ll normally pay $497 for this mower, and today’s deal comes in at a match for the second-best price we’ve seen all year long. In fact, we’ve only seen it this low once before at the beginning of May, and before that it hit $345 one time back in April, showing just how good of a deal this discount is. Not only will you get the 80V electric lawn mower, which Greenworks says has “gas-like performance,” but also two 2Ah 80V batteries which deliver up to 60 minutes of runtime per charge.
Powered by a TRUBRUSHLESS motor, this Greenworks 80V electric lawn mower has “twice the torque, power, and longer runtime” compared to normal brushed alternatives. While traditional mowers require gas every time they run, and yearly oil changes and tune ups, electric mowers need none of those things. All you have to do is charge the battery and it’s ready to mow. Occasionally, you might need some new blades, but outside of that maintenance will be next to none here. Starting it is even simple, as you just have to press the button and the quiet electric motor will whirl to life. So, if you’re ready to enter the 21st century of mowing and leave gas behind, then the Greenworks Pro 80V 21-inch model is a solid upgrade for your lawncare setup.
Joining this price drop on this more powerful Greenworks electric mower at $156 off and a series of ongoing seasonal deals from the brand, you’ll find a series of offers now live from $8 on Amazon highlighted below to kit out your yard prep setup at a discount as well:
Juiced’s RipCurrent S e-bike lets you travel greener this summer
Today, Juiced Bikes is clearing out old stock of the RipCurrent S e-bike for $1,849 shipped with the code RIDE50 at checkout. Normally $2,399, like other colorways still fetch at Juiced, today’s deal comes in at a new all-time low that we’ve tracked. In fact, it beats our last mention by an additional $50 thanks to the promo code tacked on today. Designed to help you travel greener this summer, the Juiced RipCurrent S e-bike has a lot of solid features. For starters, it can travel at up to 28 MPH, which makes it easy to ride to or from work. The 70+ mile range per charge means you can travel longer distance before having to plug back in, too.
Now, how can this e-bike make your travel greener and more eco-friendly this summer? Well, the battery can be easily charged with solar panels or power stations, which can let you enjoy off-grid power. This means that those who value being green over all else can now travel without having to have massive batteries or large solar panel banks to charge a car. The 70+ miles of range here means you can easily travel over 30 miles to work and then the same distance back, all without having to charge mid-day. However, if you do need to power up before heading home, just plug into a standard 110V wall outlet and you’ll be ready to go. Of course, there’s also a display that shows your speed, ride mode, and battery life remaining at a glance. The rear rack and fat tires make carrying heavier loads simple, even when riding over softer terrain. Learn more about the Juiced RipCurrent S e-bike in our previous coverage.
New Tesla deals
After checking out the Govee Wi-Fi smart plugs on sale above, if you keep read, you’ll find a selection of new green deals that will make your Tesla experience better in multiple areas. From storage to keep recordings on to phone mounts, car chargers, and anything else we can find, it’ll be listed below. Each day we’ll do our best to find new and exciting deals and ways for you to save on fun accessories for your Tesla, making each trip unique. For more gift ideas and deals, check out the best Tesla shop. Keep reading on for e-bike, Greenworks, and other great deals.
New e-bike deals + electric scooter discounts
If you’re looking to get out and enjoy the sunshine still after using your new electric mower, than we recommend you experience it than on another e-bike or electric scooter you just got at a fantastic price through one of our deals and sale below. You can use it for fun, exercise, or even transportation to and from work or the coffee shop. We have several people here that will regularly commute to coffee shops or offices on their e-bike, as it cuts down on fossil fuel usage as well as allows them to enjoy some time outdoors on nice sunny days. Below, you’ll find a wide selection of new e-bike deals and electric scooter deal in all price ranges, so give it a look if that’s something you’d be interested in picking up. As always, the newest e-bike deal and electric scooter discounts and sales will be at the top, so shop quick as the discounts are bound to go away soon.
Additional New Green Deals
After shopping the Govee Wi-Fi smart plugs on sale above, be sure to check out the other discounts we found today. These new green deals are wide-ranging from outdoor lawn equipment to anything else we find that could save you money in various ways, be that cutting gas and oil out of your life or just enjoying other amenities that energy-saving gear can bring. As always, the newest deals will be at the top, so shop quick as the discounts are bound to go away soon.
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