In 2020, BMW partnered with New York-based fashion brand Kith on several projects, including the limited-run G82 M4 Competition x Kith. The collaboration has proven to be successful – all 150 units of the vehicle were sold out in just 30 minutes – and has resulted in two follow-up projects, including the G26 i4 M50 by Kith as well as the 1972 BMW 1602 Elektro by Ronnie Fieg.
Starting with the i4 M50 by Kith, only seven units will be produced for the public. Like the previous M4-based special, the Kith version gets plenty of unique styling cues to make it visually distinctive. For the first time ever, BMW has named a new colour after a brand partner, with Kith Vitality Green being the primary exterior finish on the i4 M50.
The rich, dark green hue is joined by new logos that reflect the partnership, which can see be seen on the front emblem and tailgate. Meanwhile, the cabin is trimmed in full-grain Merino leather in the colour Caramel, with plenty of Kith branding on the floor mats as well as embossing on the seat headrests. The dashboard trim also gets laser engraved with “Kith Exclusive Edition,” while the cupholder lid bears “Elektro Auto”.
The powertrain remains unchanged here, with an all-wheel drive setup consisting of two electric motors – one for each axle – delivering a total system output of 544 PS (536 hp or 400 kW) and 795 Nm. As a result, the EV gets from 0-100 km/h in 3.9 seconds and will hit a top speed of 225 km/h. The i4 M50 is available for purchase in Malaysia for RM415,210 OTR without insurance, inclusive of current EV incentives.
“Elektro Auto” translates to “electric car” from German, and BMW’s first attempt at an electric car was the 1602 Elektro that was unveiled at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich. At the time, the carmaker removed the engine from regular 1602s and shoved in 12 12-volt Varta batteries for a total energy capacity of 12.6 kWh.
These powered a 44 PS (43 hp or 32 kW) Bosch electric motor, and the powertrain even included a rudimentary regenerative braking system, although the range was miniscule compared to today’s standards at around 50 km.
As part of the collaboration, Kith founder Ronnie Fieg applied his personal touches to the classic EV, swapping out the BMW letters on the front emblem and centre holes of the wheels for Kith. Inside, the leather seats are embossed with the Kith lettering, as are the leather inserts in the footwells for the driver and front passenger.
Fieg’s passion for BMW was sparked as a boy by his grandfather and he currently has a range of notable models, including the E30 M3 by Kith that spawned from the first stage of the collaboration. Unlike the i4 M50 by Kith, the 1602 Elektro by Ronnie Fieg will not be sold to the public and will instead join his collection.
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