First-ever electrified road trip on 4,100 km route across Thailand-Singapore-Thailand with BMW iX3

First-ever electrified road trip on 4,100 km route across Thailand-Singapore-Thailand with BMW iX3

10-day testament to ultimate all-electric performance beyond bounds of limitations

BMW Thailand led by Mr. Alexander Baraka (5th from left) President and CEO, BMW Group Thailand                                              brings a new chapter of an all-electric driving with a zero-emission journey of more than 4,100 kilometres in the Bangkok-Singapore-Bangkok round-trip route by Khun Ou Aticharn Cherngchavano (6th from left) and Khun Sueching Jitsupa Chin (7th from left), the owner of the BMW iX3 who shared experience of               the all-electric cross-country journey.
Photograph shows (from left) Khun Krisda Utmote (far left), Director Corporate Communications,                 BMW Group Thailand; Khun Preecha Ninatkiattikul (2nd from left), Director of Marketing, BMW Thailand;             Khun Vinate Ongnegnun (3rd from left) Marketing Manager B2C, Siam Michelin Co., Ltd;                                Khun Wasit Wattanasap (4th from left) Head of Nationwide Operations and Support Department, AIS; 
Mr. Alexander Baraka (5th from left) President and CEO, BMW Group Thailand;                                                    Khun Ou Aticharn Cherngchavano (6th from left), and Khun Sueching Jitsupa Chin (7th from left).
BMW Thailand led by Mr. Alexander Baraka (5th from left) President and CEO, BMW Group Thailand brings a new chapter of an all-electric driving with a zero-emission journey of more than 4,100 kilometres in the Bangkok-Singapore-Bangkok round-trip route by Khun Ou Aticharn Cherngchavano (6th from left) and Khun Sueching Jitsupa Chin (7th from left), the owner of the BMW iX3 who shared experience of the all-electric cross-country journey. Photograph shows (from left) Khun Krisda Utmote (far left), Director Corporate Communications, BMW Group Thailand; Khun Preecha Ninatkiattikul (2nd from left), Director of Marketing, BMW Thailand; Khun Vinate Ongnegnun (3rd from left) Marketing Manager B2C, Siam Michelin Co., Ltd; Khun Wasit Wattanasap (4th from left) Head of Nationwide Operations and Support Department, AIS; Mr. Alexander Baraka (5th from left) President and CEO, BMW Group Thailand; Khun Ou Aticharn Cherngchavano (6th from left), and Khun Sueching Jitsupa Chin (7th from left).

As the electric vehicle (EV) market has been growing by leaps and bounds and becoming a global megatrend, Thailand has also seen increasing demand for electric vehicles despite concerns about the charging station network, the usage and applications, places to wait while plugged in and other limitations that may arise over long-distance travel. However, these concerns did not bother one experienced EV user as he proved throughout his well-planned yet challenging EV road trip across three countries in ten days.

Khun Aticharn Cherngchavano (‘Ou’), the owner of a BMW iX3, joined forces with BMW Thailand, to bring to life the first-ever emissions-free experience along the 4,100 km route from Bangkok-Singapore-Bangkok. This marked a historic milestone for the future of mobility through powerful performance over a long distance, with unparalleled driving pleasure, using the all-electric Sports Activity Vehicle, the BMW iX3.

Mr. Alexander Baraka, President and CEO, BMW Group Thailand, said: “We are thrilled and delighted to be part of this first-ever road trip across Thailand and Singapore in our all-electric vehicle. Khun Aticharn’s phenomenal journey indeed unlocked the endless possibilities of electric mobility travel. This will set aside concerns about long-distance EV travel as it proves we can deliver full efficiency with sheer driving pleasure along the way. 

More importantly, our local commitment to EV acceleration is clear. In cooperation with our partners, we now provide access to 600 charging outlets in 295 locations across the nation for owners of BMW and MINI electric vehicles. Our 4 BEV models currently available for Thai customers, which include the BMW iX3, BMW iX, BMW i4 and MINI Cooper SE, have led us to become the number one leader in the premium electrified segment with 37.7% segment share YTD July 2022. By the end of this year, we will have an all-electric model on offer for each and every segment. This is yet another proof that BMW is committed to supporting every challenge that leads to the development of innovative electric vehicles to promote the future of mobility in an environmentally-friendly and sustainable way,” Mr. Baraka added.

Khun Aticharn Cherngchavano (‘Ou’) shared his experience following the cross-border journey in the BMW iX3: “This journey began because I wanted to spark the idea that driving over long distances on electric power is possible – and limitless across borders when well-planned. I saw the BMW iX3 as a perfect fit for this challenge considering its driving performance, technology, and size, which is suitable for carrying lots of luggage on a long trip. It definitely provides seamless travel in comfort.”

Ou’ Aticharn Cherngchavano (right) and ‘Sueching’ Jitsupa Chin (left) arrived in Singapore in the BMW iX3.

Ou further said that before travelling, he had researched the network of electric charging stations in each country. Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore are now ready for electric vehicle adoption since charging stations are available all the way from Thailand to Singapore, reflecting the vision and commitment to encouraging the increasing use of electric vehicles. The regulations for the use of electric charging stations may vary in each country but overall, it is very convenient since EV owners can enjoy the facilities and rest comfortably while plugged in and charging. There are also enough charging points in Singapore, so there is no need to struggle with range anxiety.

EV charging in Malaysia

In addition, Ou said that the BMW iX3, an all-electric Sports Activity Vehicle, was an important partner in making this journey successful thanks to its innovative charging unit. When using alternating current terminals (AC), it enables both single-phase and three-phase charging at up to 11 kW. Plugging the vehicle into a direct current fast-charging station (DC) facilitates charging output of up to 150 kW. The high-voltage battery in the new BMW iX3 can therefore be charged from 0 to 80% of its full capacity in 34 minutes. The BMW iX3 is also equipped with adaptive recuperation, which is geared to enhance efficiency and driving comfort during a journey. The intensity of the Brake Energy Regeneration is adapted to the road situation described by data from the navigation system and the driver assistance system sensors. This feature allows the driver to efficiently manage routes along the 400 km journey in each range.

Besides its versatility, superior comfort, and innovative driving assistant technology, which eases the stress on long journeys, the BMW iX3 also helps save money since the total price of electric charging was approximately 5,600 baht, whereas travelling in a typical ICE vehicle would cost 14,000 baht in petrol.

Elevating peace of mind with innovative driving assistant technology to ensure long-distance driving pleasure 

The first things to consider before a long journey are the vehicle’s performance and its technology. One of the driving assistant features that facilitates driving on highways in Malaysia is Active Cruise Control, which helps driving at a consistent speed, making long drives easy. The adaptive suspension can also be electrically controlled, adapting to the road surface and situation at hand to deliver sheer driving pleasure on any road challenge or weather condition. In addition, the Attentiveness Assistant can monitor the driver's behaviour for signs of fatigue by using AI technology to assess driver-readiness such as by observing the rate of the accelerator pedal and steering wheel movements. When it detects any abnormalities, a warning signal to take a break is shown, as well as suggestions for nearby coffee shops or hotels. The BMW Maps navigation system is accurate, while the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant system can control the vehicle’s features or search for destinations by voice command. And the highlight of the trip? The My BMW app, which sent and received data to Ou’s BMW iX3 seamlessly throughout this journey. The comprehensive connectivity provided real-time information such as remaining range, charging status, and other functions directly in the app. The time setting also automatically adjusts to the local time, ensuring carefree mobility travelling between any time zone.

Generous space for luggage and belongings to facilitate superior interior comfort

Aside from the long distance, another challenge of this ten-day road trip was loading the luggage and belongings of Ou, his wife, and two other passengers. The BMW iX3 stands out for its versatility and elegant interior, which enhances comfort when travelling long distances across the country. Equipped with the 40:20:40 split/folding rear seat backrest, with load capacity that can be increased from 510 to a maximum of 1,560 litres, everyone's luggage could be perfectly stored. The impressive entertainment system also played a part in making this trip more enjoyable with the Harman Kardon Surround Sound System and the BMW Live Cockpit Professional system.

The 4,100 km cross-country driving experience across Thailand-Singapore-Thailand in
Ou’s BMW iX3 was made possible thanks to Michelin, who provided Michelin Pilot Sport 4 SUV high-quality tyres, which are specifically made for premium SUVs and can enhance traction on dry and slippery surfaces. Another important partner was AIS, who supported the 5G mobile connection in Thailand and abroad, with extensive coverage along the route. Lastly, thanks go to the Singapore Tourism Board who facilitated seamless travel in Singapore.

For a special video clip recording the first-ever EV road trip of ‘Ou’ Aticharn Cherngchavano in his BMW iX3, please visit ‘Spin9’ channel on YouTube or https://youtu.be/TROS8e_8frA  on 11th August 2022 from 18.00 hrs onwards.



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