Its performance is on par with the conventionally-powered BMW X3.
BMW's electric expansion continues with the world debut of the production iX3, over two years after the original concept debuted in Shanghai. Based on the BMW X3, the BMW iX3 is the first electric BMW i model to utilize the automaker's fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology featuring the latest versions of BMW's electric motor, power electronics, charging technology and high-voltage battery, offering improved range and performance. These components will also be fitted in the BMW iNext and BMW i4 in 2021.
Powering the BMW iX3 is an electric motor generating 286 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque, which is significantly more powerful than the 168-hp BMW i3. Unlike many other electric motors, BMW claims this peak output is sustained at high revs. This setup enables the BMW iX3 to sprint from 0-62 mph in 6.8 seconds.
Impressively, this means the iX3's performance is on par with the conventionally powered BMW X3 xDrive30i. Top speed is electronically limited to 111 mph. Power is sent exclusively to the rear wheels for now, but time will tell if BMW offers an AWD variant.
Providing the juice is a 80-kWh battery pack that enables the BMW iX3 to offer a range of up to 285 miles in the WLTP test cycle. That's an improvement over the original BMW iX3 concept, which offered a WLTP-rated range of 249 miles.
Using a 150 kW fast-charging station, the high-voltage battery can be charged up to 80 percent in 34 miles. Charging the iX3 for ten minutes with a 150 kW fast-charging station will also provide enough power to last 62 miles.
By placing the battery low down in the car's underbody, the BMW iX3's center of gravity is lowered by 2.9 inches compared to the conventionally powered BMW X3. The adaptive suspension also includes electronically controlled dampers that adapt to the road surface.
Visually, the BMW iX3 looks nearly identical to the concept, from the headlight design and closed-off kidney grille to the innovative aerodynamic 19-inch wheels that give the electric SUV a drag coefficient of 0.29.
Inside, the BMW iX3 is equipped with a 12.5-inch digital instrument panel and a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system. Cabin space is on par with the regular BMW X3 model, with a maximum load capacity of 55 cu.ft.
The debut of the BMW iX3 now means the BMW X3 is the first BMW model available with conventional gasoline and diesel engines, a plug-in hybrid system, or pure-electric drive. Sales will begin in China later this year, but the BMW iX3 won't be coming to America.