It was 2013 when BMW launched the i3, its first electric car designed for mass production. This proposal was very different from the rest of the Bavarian firm’s models, as it was a peculiar B-segment minivan with rear doors opening in reverse gear and an advanced carbon fiber chassis.
Initially, the BMW i3 was equipped with 21.6 kWh batteries, although an extended range version (REx) was also offered that added a small heat engine as a generator. Later the original pack was replaced by another 33.2 kWh, while in its latest evolution it has adopted a 42.2 kWh with which it has managed to reach 310 km WLTP of autonomy, something that has meant the end of the REx variant.
Despite being eight years old, the i3 remains in good shape. However, BMW has started to roll out its new range of electric cars (iX3, i4, iX…), all of them equipped with advanced fifth-generation eDrive powertrains. Since the i3 is much older than the rest, it is a matter of time before its commercial career comes to an end.
Initially, its indirect replacement will be the future iX1, an electric SUV derived from the successful thermal X1. However, the i3 name will not fall into disuse, as following the company’s current nomenclature system, it will be reused in a 100% electric version of the 3 Series, a D-segment sedan that has been the cornerstone of the D-series offering for decades. the Bavarian company.
The BMW i3 2022 will not arrive in Europe
Now we get from China the first filtered images of the BMW i3 2022, which only differs from the conventional 3 Series by the blind grille with the edges painted in blue, the specific bumpers, the aerodynamically designed wheels, and the diffuser, which also has details in blue. The bodywork is not the same as that of the European model, as it is based on the 3 L Series with an extended wheelbase, exclusive to the Chinese market.
However, it is expected that in 2025 both the Chinese i3 and the European i4 will be replaced by a third i3 based on the next generation of the 3 Series, which will be responsible for launching the new modular platform “Neue Klasse”. Among other things, the BMW i3 2025 will enjoy up to 20% more efficient powertrain, optimized habitability, and an 800-volt electrical system.