BMW's i3 city car caught on camera during final testing, before going on sale in October

BMW's i3 city car has been spotted during final testing in Germany before hitting showrooms in October.

The five-door hatchback, which will be offered with either an all-electric or range-extended powertrain, is expected to cost from £35,000 when it goes on sale later this year. BMW showrooms have already had several models of the i3 on display for customers, and the car was recently seen at London's Motorexpo, but BMW is still giving the car a final shakedown.

This test mule was spotted in southern Germany with minimal camouflage. Most of the design of the i3 is already known, including the fact that the clear doors shown on early prototypes have been replaced with more standard options, but in these pictures the side window line is disguised, suggesting ongoing development.

Order books for the car will open towards the end of this month, with the range-extender model getting a significant price premium over the pure-electric version, at £38,000. Such a cost will place the i3 at a price point above rivals like Nissan's Leaf and the Chevrolet Volt. Based around BMW's 'Life Module' concept, the i3 has a carbonfibre reinforced plastic body structure and rides on a chassis made of almost pure aluminium.

The production version weighs 1270kg, with dimensions to rival the Mini One. The electric motor in the i3 is a 168bhp unit with 184lb ft of torque. BMW claims the i3 can acheive 0-37mph in 3.9sec and 0-62mph in 7.9sec. Maximum speed is limited to 93mph.

Recent spy shots of BMW's other i-range model, the i8, have also confirmed that the model is nearing completion. The i8 is expected to cost £100,000 when it arrives next year.

 

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11

5 July 2013

it's BMW marketing - 2 different cars artistically photographed from multiple angles.

5 July 2013

Nice to see that BMW have so successfully combined the svelte lines of a Fiat Panda with the drop dead gorgeously flowing style of the VW Golf.  Still, it's only the badge that'll matter to BMW owners, so it'll be no problem that it looks like a sack of ferrets. 

5 July 2013

pauld101 wrote:

Nice to see that BMW have so successfully combined the svelte lines of a Fiat Panda with the drop dead gorgeously flowing style of the VW Golf.  Still, it's only the badge that'll matter to BMW owners, so it'll be no problem that it looks like a sack of ferrets. 

I totally disagree. The 1,3 and 5 series are best in class - especially the 3 and 5. Most 3 series and 5 series owners buy them because they drive better than anything in their classes. If it was all about the badge, they would buy an A4 or A6 which, although perfectly good cars, are not as good as the BMW equivalent.

I do agree that some of BMWs styling leaves a lot to be desired though!

 

5 July 2013

ewanmac76 wrote:

pauld101 wrote:

Nice to see that BMW have so successfully combined the svelte lines of a Fiat Panda with the drop dead gorgeously flowing style of the VW Golf.  Still, it's only the badge that'll matter to BMW owners, so it'll be no problem that it looks like a sack of ferrets. 

I totally disagree. The 1,3 and 5 series are best in class - especially the 3 and 5. Most 3 series and 5 series owners buy them because they drive better than anything in their classes. If it was all about the badge, they would buy an A4 or A6 which, although perfectly good cars, are not as good as the BMW equivalent.

I do agree that some of BMWs styling leaves a lot to be desired though!

 

 

Calm down, girls. It's about choice, personal preference, surely even with your respective prejudices you can see that. Best in class? Says whom? It's completely subjective, like shopping for anything else.

 

Also, spy shots. Real or fake, they're a complete nonsense, and motor shows were so much more exciting when punters went along with a genuine sense of expectation at what might be revealed. Now: one big yawn. By the time a car goes on sale we've been looking at it for nearly two years.

5 July 2013

This is the same silhouette as the A2, unsurprising but Audi are left playing catch up when they could have been leading the rest.

jer

5 July 2013

+1 

5 July 2013

We will all be driving a car like this...?,is this a good thing?,function over form?,i'll drive it if it looks good on the outside aswell, this is just too samey,why not something closer to the i8....?

Peter Cavellini.

5 July 2013

GM should be leaders in the range-extender race, the Ampera was a couple of years ago and a smaller engined follow-up model should be being talked about.

Hopefully BMW won't get to far ahead and Vauxhall will maybe make the next insigna or Astra, due out in a couple of years time, available with a range extender option if practicalities allow, or at least an smaller Ampera hatchback MkII

 

Hydrogen cars just went POP

5 July 2013

Looks like it will get the same suicide doors like there is on the Mazda RX-8

7 July 2013

Agree with the comments above in the pictures of the car from the side and rear, it does look a lot like the discontinued A2.

I read somewhere that the I3 lease installments would be similar to the 3-Series but at £35 grand it looks a bit implausible.

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