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Spied: New BMW i3

by on Apr.11, 2013, under Auto Review Specs, BMW

The clock is ticking for the presentation of the first production model of BMW’s newly formed “i” sub-brand, the i3 supermini that will be followed by the more expensive and upscale i8 sports coupe. Sales of the i3 hatchback are scheduled to start in the first quarter next year with BMW to offer the car with standard plug-in electric or optional range extender-assisted, electric-drive powertrains.

 

The i3 supermini

The i3 supermini

In these fresh spy shots that landed in our email box today, the i3 has shed sections of the swirly disguise from glasshouse and the front and rear aprons. To understand what has changed from the original concept displayed at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show, we placed the images of the prototype next to the study.
At a first glance, the two cars look almost identical and this holds true to some extent. The most important changes take place on the car’s profile where the production i3 ditches the concept’s see-through door panels, while gaining longer front and shorter rear doors, which should open opposite to each other (like on the Mazda RX-8). The hatchback’s rear overhang is also longer to improve luggage space.
BMW’s designers have softened up the rest of the details, such as the headlamps and bumpers, while the i3 is the only modern day (production) BMW we can think of that doesn’t feature a Hofmeister kink on the side windows.
Motivation for the i3 will be provided by an electric motor producing 168hp (170PS / 125kW) and a constant peak torque 250 Nm (184 lb-ft). A lithium-ion battery package is said to offer cruising range between 60 to 90 miles to 160km (97 to 145 kilometers), while those who wish to dig deeper into their pockets, can order the car with a two-cylinder engine-generator that charges the batteries on the go, boosting its range to around 250 miles (~400 kilometers).

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Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Spied: New BMW i3 , 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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