A day after spy photographer spotted the BMW i8 during a cold weather testing session, the other member of the i family, BMW i3, shows up on the radar.
The fully electric i3 is also going through winter testing preparing for its market launch in 2013. At 3845mm in length, 2011mm in width and 1537mm in height, the five-door i3 is 120mm longer, 326mm wider and 132mm higher than the Mini One.
The plug-in system is a compact electric motor mounted over the rear axle. It draws energy from the battery to provide drive to the rear wheels via a single-speed transmission. The i3 will be offered with an optional range extender powertrain (called REx) to satisfy those with longer commutes.
The i3 uses an electric motor over the rear axle generating an output of 125 kW/170 hp and impressive torque of 250 Nm (184 lb-ft). BMW i3 Concept accelerates from 0 to 60 km/h (37 mph) in under four seconds and from still to 100 km/h (62 mph) in less than eight seconds. The electric vehicle has a driving range between 85 and 100 miles on a single charge.
Luggage room is said to be 14.1 cubic feet, split between the space behind the rear seats and the “frunk” under the hood. Initially, BMW plans to produce 40,000 units per year at the recently upgraded Leipzig plant.
The rumormill churns out that the BMW i3 will start at $35,000 in the United States.