Next BMW i3 Will Come In Two Flavors

Starting this fall, BMW i3 buyers will have three options: a new i3 with upgraded 33 kWh battery pack, a new REx i3 with the larger battery pack and range extender gasoline engine, or an i3 with the original 22 kWh battery pack. Prices are $44,595,, $48,350, and $43,350 respectively.

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All three versions have the same 170 horsepower electric motor rated at 184 lb-ft of torque. 0 to 60 times of just over 7 seconds will remain for both cars without the range extender engine. REx models take about a second longer. With the upgraded battery, BMW will be able to unlock the full capacity of the 2.4 gallon gas tank. In the US, the capacity of the fuel tank was previously limited electronically to 1.9 gallons.

Offering customers different battery sizes is becoming a trend in the world of electric automobiles. The Nissan LEAF is now available either with a 24 kWh battery with 82 miles of range or a 30 kWh battery with 107 miles of range. Tesla has just announced the return of the 60 kWh battery in the Model S. The new model lists for $4,000 less than the original Tesla Model S 60, which was withdrawn from the lineup just a few months ago. The Tesla actually comes with a 75 kWh battery pack, but it is software limited to only 60 kWh of capacity. An upgrade to the full 75 kWh capacity is an $8,500 option.

The new i3 battery pack fits in the same space as the old one but uses new 94 amp-hour lithium ion cells with higher energy density than the 60 amp-hour cells used previously. Range is now listed at 114 miles.

The base i3 will continue to be offered in three trim levels—Mega World, Giga World, and Tera World. The i3 with the larger battery will be offered in new Deka World trim level standard. Cars with the 22 kWh battery will not be available with the eye catching Protonic Blue paint that debuted on the i8 last year. They will also not be available with the much sought after sunroof — a $1,000 option on cars fitted with the larger battery.

 

The 2017 BMW i3 is expected to go on sale in late summer or early fall.

Source: Green Car Reports

 

Steve Hanley

Closely following the transition from internal combustion to electricity. Whether it's cars, trucks, ships, or airplanes, sustainability is the key. Please follow me on Google + and Twitter.