BMW UK gives the i3 electric car a small upgrade. Along with three new colors, the UK folks have added a Sport Package to the i3. This includes 19-inch alloy wheels, tinted windows, LED headlights and Harman/Kardon audio for £1,700, a £610 saving over optioning them separately. The new color options also enable the car to be finished entirely in black for the first time.
The sport package is 100 percent aesthetic in nature and won’t improve the handling characteristics. For now, BMW i3 customers will have to resort to aftermarket companies for special springs. H&R springs – for example – work well with the factory shocks and dampening to retain much of the factory driveability and ride. This spring set will make a subtle yet noticeable visual improvement to the i3’s stance, reducing the perceived fender gap of the stock ride height. The front lowering is 1.2″ while the rear measures .8″.
A full life cycle impulse – facelift – will arrive in 2017 when the design will get some small updates. The biggest upgrade will be a new battery pack which will increase the range of the i3. In a recent interview with Die Zeit, BMW’s chief – Harald Krueger – said the i3 will take advantage next year of new battery technology.
“Battery cell technology continues to evolve,” Krueger said. “The range of the i3 will be increased in 2016. A further technological improvement is to be expected in three or four years: Then you’ll be able to go twice as far on a single charge without any further increase in the weight of the battery.”
Our sources say the i3 will get a new battery with higher capacity and more efficient which will lead to a higher driving range. The i3 currently has a driving range of 81 miles – 72 mile when fitted with the range extender.
Same sources say BMW has yet to determine whether customers will be able to swap their current i3 battery pack – at a cost – or the two i3 models will be sold concurrently as Tesla does with its Model S vehicles