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.
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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