The all-electric version isn't too far behind.
The changeover from pure internal combustion engines to all-electric vehicles is currently underway. Powertrain such as hybrids and plug-in hybrids are simply, more or less, stop-gap measures in the big scheme of things. And now that BMW has successfully launched its latest generation X3 crossover, it’s time to once again look to the future. Our spy photographers have just caught BMW testing an X3 xDrive30e prototype in snowy Sweden. What you’re looking at is a plug-in hybrid that not so long ago was reportedly cancelled.
But now it appears the project is back on while, at the same time, an all-electric X3 crossover is in development. As for the plug-in hybrid variant, we’re told it’ll come into flavors, the xDrive30e and xDrive40e with either 252 hp or 326 hp, respectively. We’re not sure which of the two is pictured here, but it’s definitely not a pure electric. Evidence of this is clearly seen at the rear with the exhaust pipes. These plug-in hybrids will come powered by a four-cylinder gasoline engine and an electric motor integrated into the housing of the eight-speed automatic transmission. This is the same setup BMW is already doing for the 330e, 530e, and 740e.
We still don’t have an official launch date for either the X3 plug-in hybrid or full electric, but a pretty good guess would be a late 2018 or early 2019 reveal. It’s also possible both will be unveiled simultaneously, which makes sense because they’ll be built under the iPerformance label. More than likely, the X3 EV will be branded the iX3. Details are a bit scarce at the moment, but sources say it'll have around a 200-mile range on a single charge. It'll be just part of BMW's upcoming big electrification push which will see a total of 12 new electric vehicles launched between 2019 and 2025.