German tuner AC Schnitzer readies BMW i4 M50 for the Essen Motor Show, presenting it in German police colors.
The tuning house has produced a body kit for the i4 M50 aimed at aerodynamics, in addition to adding wheels of its own design.
The i4 M50 is one of three versions of the electric gran coupe BMW has launched so far, targeting the likes of the Tesla Model 3.
Following the debut of the BMW i4 earlier in 2021, we knew it wouldn't be long before tuning houses and police departments alike would take interest in Munich's midsize electric gran coupe. But German tuner AC Schnitzer is catering to both audiences simultaneously with a single concept car, revealing a polizei-spec BMW i4 M50 at last month's Essen motor show.
The i4 M50 already has a lot going for it in terms of performance, serving up 536 hp and 586 lb-ft of torque, along with 0-to-60 mph launches in 3.3 seconds. That's already quicker than most things one could see on German roads, including police cars, with 100 mph arriving in 8.0 seconds on its way to an 11.7-second quarter mile.
These figures already sound difficult to improve upon, with AC Schnitzer focusing on the handling and aerodynamics rather than the raw power with this project. The tuning house added front spoiler elements including front splitters, roof and trunk rear spoilers, front and rear wings of its own design, and even a protective film for the rear apron. AC Schnitzer also lowered the suspension by up to 0.9 inches with its own spring set, while also giving the i4 M50 20-inch wheels of its own design wearing Hankook Ventus S1 evo 3 tires.
The tuning house left the interior largely stock, fitting aluminum pedals and an aluminum footrest to the interior, in addition to a control system for the Hella lightbar.
Just how likely are you to see an i4 M50 polizei car on your next trip to Germany?
Not very, at least at the moment. The i4 M50 is certainly quick, but it's also quite a bit more expensive than its eDrive40 single-motor sibling that offers a lot more range: 300 miles in the latter versus 245 in the former in EPA testing. The 335-hp eDrive40, of course, is the middle choice in the three-variant lineup, with the base eDrive35 serving up 260 miles of EPA range.
Out of these three, the least powerful (and least expensive) version perhaps holds the best chance of seeing police duty as it already outperforms quite a few other police cars in Germany, with 281 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque on tap in the eDrive35, and a 0-to-60 time of 5.8 seconds. And it starts around $51,000.
German police agencies have already purchased a couple hundred units of the VW ID.3 hatch, so performance numbers are perhaps not the primary goal of fleet purchases, at least for some duties.
For autobahn patrols we expect the polizei will stick to gas-engined models for now, but German cities are increasingly looking to EVs for all other duties, as fleet requirements in municipalities evolve to favor zero-emission vehicles. This means battery-electric ambulances based on vehicles like the Mercedes-Benz eSprinter and VW ID. Buzz are right around the corner as well.