BMW works council backs electric-only platform

Europe

BERLIN — BMW should shift course and establish a technology platform just for full-electric cars, moving away from developing cars that can be fitted with either electric or combustion engines, the head of the influential works council said.

“Only with our own e-architecture can we fully exploit the advantages of an electric vehicle,” Manfred Schoch told Der Spiegel magazine.

Schoch said a dedicated electric platform is needed if BMW is not to be overtaken by competitors from California such as electric car company Tesla or from China.

Spiegel said Schoch’s call comes after some BMW managers have pushed for a new electric strategy internally for some time. Those managers hope that the company will now quickly shift to develop a pure e-platform, which would make cars lighter and give them a longer battery range and a bigger interior.

Asked about the report, a BMW spokesman said the company was currently “optimally positioned” and declined to comment on speculation about internal discussions.

In February, BMW’s new management team said it will stick with the automaker’s “integrated” platform, which can underpin EVs as well as cars with combustion engines.

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