BMW have led in the production of electric scooters since launching the C-Evolution back in 2014. Now they've launched the BMW CE 04 electric scooter, a next generation vehicle in the urban mobility segment.
It's striking design makes it eye catching form the get go but its backed up by amazing BMW precision and technology that brand loyalists have come to expect.
Read on in our BMW CE 04 review to discover more about the model and how electric bikes are able to run in direct competition with their internal combustion engine siblings.
One of the unique aspects of the BMW CE 04 is that it remained relatively unchanged from its unveiling as a concept in 2020 to actual model production, a rare feat in the automotive world.
The electric powertrain gave BMW designers much more freedom than with combustion engine counterparts. This allowed them to develop a liquid cooled electric motor unit in house from technology already in use for BMW's hybrid and electric cars.
The bespoke motor housing design has allowed BMW to make the CE 04 a much slimmer bike than a conventional scooter that has efficient rear suspension and power delivered via a belt final drive.
Thanks to this unique design it has allowed BMW to continue to create smart solutions on the CE 04. The side of the bike, just above the electric motor housing, has a built in storage compartment that's able to hold a full face helmet and can be accessed without getting off the bike.
There's also a fan-cooled smartphone pocket below the handlebars that has a USB charger which allows you to take full advantage of the bike's connectivity suite. This is linked directly to the bike's 10.25 inch TFT screen which displays navigation information alongside standard information on range and speed and is controlled from the left handlebar.
There are two styling options for the BMW CE 04; Style Avantgarde and Light White. Style Avantgarde gives you a Magellan Grey metallic base which blends in with its urban environment and has flashes of orange to accent it. This includes the orange windscreen, a truly unique design choice. Light white is a more traditional colour pairing of bright white with black and grey accents which BMW say reflects the "vibrant big city".
BMW also say that these "colour concepts have been accurately adapted to the modern and unmistakeable design of the BMW CE 04. They emphasise the pioneering design and set striking highlights."
As standard, your BMW CE 04 comes with the Pro seat fitted. It's a long and flat seat suitable for two passengers. This can be upgraded to Backrest Seat Pro which apparently increases comfort on longer journeys thanks to integrated pelvic support whilst still allowing for a passenger to ride along with you.
There's heated grips on the handlebars too which helps to keep your hands comfortable, even on colder days, to provide greater comfort but also to allow you to keep full control of the bike itself. It's worth noting that this is part of the comfort pack and not a standard on the BMW CE 04.
The 10.25 inch TFT screen is standard on the BMW CE04 and can be used the Motorrad Connected app which allows for route planning, navigation, route recording, and vehicle data. BMW have made sure that pairing your smartphone and being able to safely harness it's connectivity is a key part of the BMW CE 04 experience.
The BMW CE 04 comes with three standard rider modes: Road, Rain, and Eco. Each of these has its own throttle response and engine braking (regenerative braking) which makes it a different experience for each mode and allows you to utilise the BMW CE 04 as a highway bike when necessary.
Road has a smooth throttle response but the torque kicks in harder than the other modes and offers full acceleration at the cost of dramatically reduced engine braking. Eco mode is focused on efficiency and conserving and utilising the battery power in the best way possible, mainly through strong engine braking. Rain mode gives a softer power response, making it ideal for using when the elements are against you.
There's also the option to add on Riding Mode Pro (also called Dynamic Mode) through the addition of the Dynamic Package at £380. With optional Dynamic mode fitted it provides a more direct throttle response but also makes it a safer driving experience with ABS Pro which increases safety when braking at an angle. The Dynamic Package also adds adaptive headlights and headlight pro which gives the same lighting elements that function as side or daytime lights.
The Comfort Package, costing £450, add the backrest comfort seat which has heating, pelvic support and thicker upholstery, and the heated handlebar grips. Finally, you can add the City Pack for £780. This includes the centre stand, heated grips, and tyre pressure control to aid you in urban areas.
There is only one battery option available for the BMW CE 04, making your choice that much easier. It's an 8.9 kWh battery that provides 31 kW of power to the electric motor, equivalent to 42hp. The 04 in its name refers to 400cc output combustion engine bikes, which the CE 04 is a direct equivalent to. Very impressive for such a small vehicle although it definitely has BMW technology running through its veins.
The battery cells that are used in the BMW CE 04 are the same that you'll find in the powerful iX and i4 BMW cars meaning that these car battery cells are tried and tested for much bigger and more powerful electric vehicles.
BMW say that it will give you a fully range of 130km (between 80 and 81 miles) and they highlight that it's ideal for urban driving as a result.
Your BMW CE 04 will be able to charged with the 2.3 kW integrated charger and the Mode 2 charging cable supplied with the electric bike. This cable will allow you to charger directly from your domestic socket and will take around 3 and a half hours to charge from 0-80%.
Alternatively, if you use a wallbox charger, the BMW CE 04 will charge at up to 6.9 kW which will reduce the 0-80% charge time to just 65 minutes with a Mode 3 charging cable, depending on the charging column that you use. The flexibility of charging options allows you to feel comfortable taking the CE 04 electric scooter with you wherever your next destination is.
The BMW CE 04 starts at £12,270, which is considerably more than it's combustion engine counterpart the BMW C 400 X which starts at £6250. As a brand new electric bike its not surprising that it has a price jump from its petrol counterpart, you see the same with an electric car.
Choosing to add on any of the additional packages that BMW offer for the CE 04 will adjust the price accordingly, so expect to pay more if you want all of the gadgets and features on your model.
Given the innovative design choices and incredible BMW electric technology in the bike it certainly seems worth its price tag.
The 2022 BMW CE 04 is still a bit of a divisive model for bike lovers. Looking at performance it's a fantastic city bike with multiple riding modes (including the optional dynamic mode) and can easily take on conventional petrol scooters. On the flip side, however, it's going to be difficult for budget conscious commuter bike users to get on board with thanks to it's larger price tag than that on non electric motorcycles.
The best advice that we can give is to give it a try to really get a feel for it as you'll be pleasantly surprised. To book a test drive or for more information please don't hesitate to contact our knowledgeable teams at BMW Motorrad Aberdeen and Tayside.