With the first ever iX3, BMW unleashes the saga of electrically powered SAVs. In true BMW tradition, the new electric X3 features pure rear-wheel drive traction and a state-of-the-art powertrain that premieres the 5th generation of the trailblazing BMW eDrive electric architecture. The new BMW iX3 brings together the strong qualities of the electric powertrain with the functionality and classiness of the true Bavarian Sports Activity Vehicles.
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The new iX3 will be manufactured in China, at the Shenyang plant operated by the BMW Brilliance Automotive joint venture. It will be the first Chinese-built BMW model also destined for export onto international markets.
The market introduction of the new BMW iX3 is scheduled for late 2020. With this all-new addition, the X3 becomes the first BMW model to offer wide-ranging powertrain choices, comprising diesel, petrol, plug-in hybrid and now also electric versions.
Powerful, electrifying looks
The new BMW iX3 sports a powerful and robust aura, boasting specific BMW i design accents and details. The new kidney grille features the traditional separated units with a filled mesh pattern true to the BMW i brand identity.
As well, the front and rear bumpers are further redesigned to minimize air drag. The new Aerodynamic Wheels are also another standard feature that debuts on the new BMW iX3, further optimizing aerodynamics by reducing the drag up to 5%.
This, in terms, leads to important energy savings and an increased electric range. The gain is of up to 10 kilometers in WLTP cycle thanks to the Aerodynamic Wheels, which improve the air flow. Furthermore, the underbody architecture and the targeted exterior design of the new iX3 lead to an overall aerodynamic drag coefficient (Cd) of just 0.29, which is certainly a great achievement for the electric Sports Activity Vehicle.
Customers can choose from Carbon Black metallic, Sophisto Grey brilliant effect metallic, Mineral White metallic, Phytonic Blue metallic, Piedmont Red metallic and Cashmere Silver metallic. The Phytonic Blue metallic and Piedmont Red metallic variants combined with accents in Frozen Grey or Pearl-effect Chrome instead of the hallmark BMW i blue detailing.
BMW IconicSounds Electric and complete, all-rounding equipment package
Like every BMW, the new iX3 features a complete equipment package. There are two model lines offered to choose from: the standard “Inspiring” line and the optional “Impressive” model. The entry-level “Inspiring” iX3 comes fitted with a complete array of equipment: sports steering wheel, ambient lighting, memory function seats, metallic paintwork, 19-inch aerodynamic wheels, LED headlights, a panoramic glass sunroof, automatic tailgate operation, Driving Assistant Professional, Park Distance Control with front and rear sensors, a tyre pressure indicator and an alarm system.
The iX3 “Impressive” adds further attractive options such as: the 20-inch aero wheels, Adaptive LED headlights, Comfort Access, Vernasca leather trim and front sports seats with lumbar support, BMW Head-Up Display, High Beam Assistant and Parking Assistant Plus, Gesture Control, Harman/Kardon surround sound system and a WiFi hotspot.
The new iX3 also premieres the specific BMW IconicSounds Electric acoustic signals, that are further destined to enrich the electric driving experience. The electric sound was specifically created by Hollywood legend Hans Zimmer together with BMW Group sound design engineer Renzo Vitale.
5th generation BMW eDrive goes into action
The new BMW iX3 is the very first model to employ the fifth generation of the eDrive electric architecture. In all aspects, the new powertrain employed in the iX3 is both lighter and more compact, ensuring a greater robustness, more efficiency and a higher electric range.
The 5th generation of the BMW eDrive powertrain comprises a new arrangement of the components, a high-voltage battery, the latest electric motor, new power electronics and charging technology.
In the new iX3, the electric motor, power electronics and transmission are now arranged in a single unit, which takes less space than on other comparable BMW Group pure electric vehicles. What’s more, the use of rare earth materials is now fully avoided thanks to the new electric current-excited synchronous motor which does away with the conventional magnets.
Another key attribute of the electric powertrain featured on the new iX3 is the achieved power density, which almost 30% greater than in the case of the existing BMW Group electric models.
Power Output, Performance And Range
The new electric motor powering the iX3 develops a peak output of 210 kW / 286 PS (282 hp) and a maximum torque of 400 Nm (295 lb-ft), which are constantly available over a wide rpm range, even at high revs, contrary to most of the existing electric vehicles on the market.
The acceleration from standstill to 100 km/h takes 6.8 seconds, while the top speed of the new iX3 is electronically limited to 180 km/h. The new BMW X electric model also employs the ARB technology (actuator continuous wheel slip limitation), already seen on the i3 and front-wheel drive compact models, as to improve traction.
The gross energy content of the new high-voltage battery installed in the iX3 reaches 80 kWh, while the net storage capacity hits an overall 74 kWh. The increased energy that can be stored in the battery is the result of the dense prismatic cell architecture of the battery, comprising 188 units.
Thus, the new iX3 is capable of achieving a range of up to 459 kilometers in WLTP cycle or up to 520 kilometers in the NEDC test cycle. The electric X3 also brings another breakthrough as part of its eDrive architecture: an innovative charging unit, which feeds both the 400-volt battery and the 12-volt on-board supply.
When plugged in to a fast charging station, the output can reach up to 150 kW, which means the new iX3 can be charged from 0 to 80% in just around 34 minutes. To add up 100 kilometers (in WLTP test cycle) to the driving range of the iX3, approximately 10 minutes are required.
The new iX3 is also able to perform Brake Energy Recuperation at a lower or more intense rate, in relation with the setting chosen by the driver. When approaching a road junction or a vehicle, recuperation is fully used during the braking phase.
In addition to the adaptive recuperation, the driver can adapt to perform a high, medium or low energy recuperation. If the driving selector on the center console is toggled onto position B, this enables the typical BMW Group one-pedal driving feel and particularly strong brake energy recuperation.
Hallmark BMW dynamics
The new BMW iX3 achieves exemplary agility and handling characteristic thanks to its center of gravity, facilitated by the low positioning of the BMW eDrive architecture and the more compact and lightweight high-voltage battery.
Compared to conventional X3 models, the new iX3 boasts a center of gravity that is reduced by around 7.5 centimeters. The rear axle also features a subframe that houses the components of the electric powertrain.
The new iX3 comes equipped with standard, electronically-controlled dampers, while the Adaptive M Suspension system is offered as an optional equipment.
Furthermore, the ARB traction control system first premiered in 2013 on the i3 is certainly improving grip and handling in adverse weather conditions and slippery roads, thus maximizing the safety and predictability of the rear-axle electric SAV.
A complete host of dedicated services
The new BMW iX3 comes fully equipped with a a consistent array of digital assistants and services that are aimed at enhancing the electric driving experience, such as the products from the BMW Charging and BMW Connected Charging programs.
First of all, the iX3 premieres the Flexible Fast Charger cable which can be at both conventional household power sources and at industrial sockets. The car also comes with the standard BMW Charging Card, which provides convenient at more than 45,000 public charging stations all over the world.
The new iX3 is fully based on the BMW OS 7.0 infotainment system and also features the fast and precise BMW Maps cloud-based navigation. The technology enables the driver to plan the guidance according to the presence of charging stations across the route.
Despite being the largest SUV market, the U.S. will not get the BMW iX3. In Germany, the BMW iX3 will start at 68,040 euros.