The European press is getting it’s first taste of the i3 this week and on that occasion BMW has released a slew of new photos of the car as well as final European specifications. But for those who haven’t seen the 13 in the flesh, it’s the photos that will be the most interesting as they capture the car in the real world better than any we’ve seen yet.
We’ll be driving the new i3 soon but in the meantime, you can check out our hands-on impressions of the car from it’s NYC launch earlier this year.
Full Official Release (PDF)
Highlights from the official release:
• Market launch of the BMW i3 heralds the dawn of a new era in electric mobility; the new BMW i brand presents the BMW Group’s first volume-produced model driven purely by electric power; visionary design; revolutionary vehicle architecture; familiar BMW driving pleasure; innovative connectivity; future-focused premium character strongly defined by sustainability; product substance unmatched by any rival is rooted in the well-founded research and development work carried out as part of project i and the superior technological expertise of the BMW Group.
• The BMW i3 is an uncompromising and attractive solution to personal mobility requirements of the present and the future in urban areas; first premium car worldwide purpose-designed to run purely on electric power – and therefore emission-free; specially developed LifeDrive architecture, BMW eDrive drive technology, customary BMW rear-wheel drive and revolutionary lightweight design underpin the perfect balance of driving pleasure, range and weight; the BMW i3’s carbon footprint is around a third smaller than that of the BMW 118d – the World Green Car of the Year 2008 – or around 50 per cent smaller if the car is running on power generated from renewable sources.
• Passenger cell (Life module) made from carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP); drivetrain technology, high-voltage battery, chassis, crash and structural functions integrated into the aluminium Drive module; DIN kerb weight: 1,195 kilograms; low centre of gravity; even weight distribution; spacious interior with four seats; slightly raised seating position; opposing “coach” doors; torsional stiffness of CFRP passenger cell structure allows the omission of B-pillars; centre tunnel has also been omitted, thanks to the positioning of the electric motor directly on the driven rear axle; boot capacity: 260 – 1,100 litres.
• Groundbreaking design based around signature BMW i design language; faithful visualisation of sporting capability and efficiency; distinctive proportions; hallmark BMW i colour scheme, including exterior “black belt”; distinctive side view exuding lightness – with stream flow lines and large window surfaces; short overhangs; enclosed BMW kidney grille; bespoke design for the headlights and rear light clusters with U-shaped LED arrangement; rear lights integrated into the fully glazed tailgate.
• Innovatively designed interior with a clear emphasis on spaciousness, cutting-edge functionality and a future-focused premium character; clear structuring provided by a surface design based on the layering principle; lightweight seats; exceptionally high proportion of naturally treated materials, recycled materials and renewable raw materials; start/stop button and bespoke gear selector lever on the steering column; instrument cluster and Control Display in freestanding monitor form; iDrive operating system and Driving Experience Control switch fitted as standard; four equipment lines available: Atelier, Loft, Lodge and Suite.
• BMW eDrive technology including electric motor and high-performance lithium-ion battery developed and manufactured independently by the BMW Group; hybrid synchronous electric motor developed specifically for the i3, maximum output: 125 kW/170 hp, peak torque: 250 Nm (184 lb-ft); power sent to the rear wheels via an integrated differential gear; lithium-ion high-voltage battery with usable energy capacity of 18.8 kWh; intelligent drivetrain and charge management using power electronics developed by the BMW Group; battery can be recharged from a domestic power socket, BMW i Wallbox or public charging station.
• Sporting driving characteristics and excellent agility; acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 7.2 seconds, 0 to 60 km/h (37 mph) in 3.7 seconds and from 80 to 120 km/h (50 to 75 mph) in 4.9 seconds; top speed, electronically limited: 150 km/h (93 mph); turning circle: 9.86 metres.
• Energy consumption: 12.9 kilowatt hours per 100 kilometres (62 miles) in the EU test cycle; more efficient than any competitor, efficiency further optimised through specific BMW EfficientDynamics technology, such as Brake Energy Regeneration, ECO PRO and ECO PRO+ mode including coasting function; range under everyday conditions: 130 – 160 kilometres (approx. 80 – 100 miles) when COMFORT mode is engaged using the Driving Experience Control switch; range can be increased by 20 kilometres (12 miles) when ECO PRO or ECO PRO+ mode are activated; additional option: two-cylinder range extender petrol engine developing 25 kW/34 hp maintains a minimum charge level and boosts range to around 300 kilometres (185 miles).
• Sophisticated chassis technology enables a well-balanced combination of agile handling and impressive ride comfort; MacPherson single-joint spring strut front suspension; five-link rear axle mounted directly to the Drive module; Electric Power Steering; DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) including DTC (Dynamic Traction Control); 19-inch forged light-alloy wheels as standard.
• Intelligent lightweight design, e.g. a CFRP passenger cell, aluminium chassis, instrument panel with magnesium supporting structure and weight optimisation of all components specially developed for the i3; comprehensive safety concept with precisely defined crash zones in the Drive module, extremely torsionally stiff passenger cell and electronically controlled restraint systems.
• Varied range of BMW ConnectedDrive features, including standard BMW i functions; connectivity via a SIM card fitted in the vehicle; BMW TeleServices and Intelligent Emergency Call as standard; optional Driving Assistant Plus with camera-based Cruise Control including Stop & Go function, Traffic Jam Assistant, Speed Limit Info and No Passing Info display, pedestrian recognition and Collision Warning with light city braking function, Proactive Driving Assistant; optional parking assistance package with PDC at the front, rear view camera and fully automatic Parking Assistant; optional Comfort Package with features including a rain sensor, Cruise Control with braking function, automatically dimming rear-view and exterior mirrors; also available are BMW Online Entertainment, Concierge Services, Real Time Traffic Information, use of the flinc car sharing network (only in Germany for the time being) and other mobility services specific to BMW i.
• Services specific to BMW i available as part of 360° ELECTRIC: BMW i Wallbox enabling convenient battery charging at home, ChargeNow card allowing customers to use public charging stations without the need for cash, innovative mobility services, intermodal route guidance via smartphone app, MyCityWay and ParkatmyHouse.
• Extensive standard equipment, including Navigation system Professional with dynamic range display, USB and AUX-in sockets, hands-free facility for telephone, air conditioning, leather steering wheel, LED daytime driving lights, Park Distance Control (PDC) with rear-mounted sensors, charging cable for use with a domestic power socket.
• All-embracing sustainability concept across the entire value chain; carbon fibre production at Moses Lake, USA, and vehicle assembly at BMW Plant Leipzig using 100 per cent renewable energy; BMW i packages for using eco power to charge the high-voltage battery; innovative sales concepts for flexible access to personal mobility.