Jalopnik took a ride in the BMW Power BEV “Lucy”
June 27th, 2019 Nico DeMattia
BMW Power BEV 5 Series When BMW first debuted its so-called Power BEV a few
days ago in Munich, it made quite the stir. It looks like a G30 5 …
When BMW first debuted its so-called Power BEV a few days ago in Munich, it
made quite the stir. It looks like a G30 5 Series, because it is one, but
with some camouflage on the front and rear. While it’s a 5 Series on the
outside, it’s entirely different underneath the skin. Rather than a
traditional 5 Series powertrain, this Power BEV, internally known as “Lucy”,
actually uses an all-electric powertrain and has performance that would
squash an M5.
During the #NEXTGen19 event, Jalopnik’s David Tracy was able to ride shotgun
in Lucy with a BMW engineer behind the wheel. And he almost lost his lunch.
Powering Lucy is an electric powertrain that consists of three of BMW’s new
fifth-generation electric drive units. Each drive unit consists of an
electric motor, its gearbox and all of the requisite electronics. Two of
them power Lucy’s rear axle and one powers the front axle. Sandwiched
between all of that is a 45 kWh battery pack. Total power output? An
astonishing 710 hp and an Earth-turning 885 lb-ft of torque. According to
BMW, it can get from 0-60 mph in 2.8 seconds.
You might think that 2.8 seconds to 60 mph isn’t super impressive,
considering the BMW M5 can do that with just 600 hp. Until you realize that
Lucy is a modified 5 Series project that weighs 5,300 lbs (!). That’s about
as heavy as a Chevy Tahoe and it can nail 60 mph in under three seconds.
More impressive than that, it can slalom like an M5 can as well, thanks to
its impressive real-time electric torque vectoring. So despite weighing as
much as a moon, Lucy is a surprisingly deft athlete. No wonder Tracy almost
lost his lunch.
In the video, it doesn’t seem shockingly fast, simply because iPhone videos
do not convey sense of speed well. However, you can hear in his voice and
the see in the jerking of the camera that they’re moving rapidly. That level
of torque is enough to tow a cruise ship and it’s powering a midsize sedan.
What’s interesting is that BMW created Lucy without changing the interior of
the 5 Series at all. So it still remained a comfortable and luxurious sedan,
without any humps in the floor or other modifications. It took some tricky
engineering, and a loss of trunk space, to make that happen but it proves
that BMW can do it even on a regular 5 Series. Though, it did get G12 LCI 7
Series suspension front and rear to accommodate the electric motors and
It’s an interesting read and it proves what BMW can do with electrification.
So while a lot of enthusiasts bemoan BMW’s seeming apprehension to make
proper performance EVs, akin to Tesla’s Model S P100D, the brand is fully
capable of doing so. Lucy is just a way for BMW to flex its muscles.
Apparently, hers are pretty strong.
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