The rumormill churns out that BMW is planning an additional i3 model. Dubbed i3s, the electric vehicle is not only rumored to deliver a higher driving range, but also offer a sportier ride. The whole sporty angle of the i3 was also planned for the i3 Shadow Sport Edition, but the sport-tuned suspension was eventually nixed from U.S.-bound i3s. Not many other details are known at the moment, including the launch date, but the i3 could deliver additional power compared to the current i3. The i3′s electric drivetrain generates output of 125 kW/170 hp and peak torque of 250 Newton meters, which is immediately available from a standing start.
In July 2016, BMW will also refresh its i3 electric car with a higher energy density battery. The current model consists of 8 x 2.7 kWh packs cells – each containing 12 x 3.75 volt, 60 Ah actual cells – wired in series for a nominal capacity of 21.6 kWh, 360 volts, of which 18.8 kWh are usable. The new battery is expected to have a 94Ah battery and the higher energy density will give the i3 an expected range of 120 miles. The actual rating will be issued by EPA after testing. EPA currently rates the i3 BEV at 81 miles.
BMW hinted at the possibility of current owners to retrofit the battery, but the cost and process won’t be revealed until we get close to the market launch.
It also remains to be seen if BMW will bundle the battery upgrade with the sports upgrades of the i3 and sell it as a single package.