Late last year, first rumors of a sportier version of BMW’s i3 electric car surfaced on the interwebs. An independent source told BMWBLOG today that the i3 S will be shown before the end of the year with sales projected for 2018. While not confirmed for every world market, the expectations are that new model will be sold alongside the “standard i3.”
The i3S, as it is expected to be called, aims to be the market’s first proper electric hot hatch. Built upon the current i3, but with tech and features from the upcoming i3 facelift, the i3s is expected to deliver between 10 and 15 more horsepower than the current model – which offers 168 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque – enough to propel the i3 from 0 to 62 mph in 7.3 second. The slight bump in power is likely to offer a faster standard sprint.
The i3 range as a whole will get minor styling tweaks, but aside from adjustments to the car’s bumpers and possible changes to the headlights, the car’s overall look will remain largely unchanged. The i3 S – compared to the i3 facelift – is rumored to offer a slightly beefier body, a lower ride height and wider tires. All of these will certainly adjust the character of the car, offering a more dynamic ride, as requested by some customers.
The interior is expected to be refreshed with an updated infotainment system, as well.
With Frankfurt Auto Show taking place in September, it’s hard to believe that BMW won’t use this opportunity to introduce the i3 facelift and the new i3 S. The alternative scenario is for a public introduction at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November.