Currently reading: New BMW iX3: electric SUV priced from £61,900 in UK
Rear-driven, 282bhp electric SUV available to pre-order in Premier Edition form; cheaper variants could follow
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3 mins read
16 September 2020

BMW has priced up its second fully electric model, the iX3, which is available to pre-order today ahead of UK customer deliveries commencing in summer 2021. 

Two exclusive variants will be offered at launch: the Premier Edition and Premier Edition Pro, which are priced from £61,900 and £64,900 respectively. Although not confirmed, cheaper variants could follow at a later date. 

The Premier Edition comes as standard with kit including 20in alloy wheels with an aerodynamic design, an electric tailgate, adaptive suspension and a panoramic sunroof. Electrically adjustable heated front seats, wireless smartphone charging and a suite of driver assistance systems are also thrown in. Four exterior paint colours, two exterior trim colours and four Vernasca leather colours are offered.

The Premier Edition Pro brings more features, such as a head-up display, a Harman Kardon surround-sound system, gesture control, automatic high-beam, adjustable lumbar support and Parking Assistant Plus. It also features BMW's new IconicSounds Electric augmented ‘engine’ sound generation, developed in conjunction with composer Hans Zimmer

Based on the third-generation X3, the electric SUV is positioned above the i3 supermini and introduces what BMW describes as its fifth-generation eDrive system. This features a newly developed electric-motor-and-battery combination that provides it with 282bhp and an official WLTP range of 285 miles.

First previewed at the 2018 Beijing motor show, the iX3 breaks new ground by being the first BMW to be produced in China for export to key world markets.

Production of the iX3, the first of three new electric, i-branded BMW models due to go on sale within the next 18 months, will take place exclusively at a joint-venture factory operated by BMW and Chinese car maker Brilliance in Shenyang, Liaoning, with right-hand-drive UK deliveries planned to begin next March.

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Holding true to the appearance of the concept, the production version of the iX3 is differentiated from the standard X3 by a blanked-off front grille with vertical air ducts at each corner, an altered breather element behind the front wheelhouses, revised sills and a lightly revised rear bumper. Blue elements within the grille, sills and rear bumper are used to signal its electric propulsion. Its drag coefficient is 0.29Cd.

Although its bodystyle might suggest that it offers four-wheel drive, the iX3 is planned to be exclusively rear-driven. Power comes from a rear-mounted electric motor producing 282bhp and 295lb ft of torque, being channelled through a single-speed gearbox.

The BMW-developed motor avoids the use of rare earth metals, boosting the environmental credentials yet also reducing the manufacturing cost. Power density is said to be 30% greater than that of the i3’s motor. It’s also engineered to achieve its peak torque at higher sustained revs than any of BMW’s earlier motors. Sources suggest it can achieve up to 17,000rpm, compared with the i3’s 14,000rpm.

As well as featuring in the iX3, this fifth-generation motor is set to be used in a more powerful tune by the upcoming i4 compact saloon and the iNext large SUV, both of which are due by the end of 2021.

BMW claims a 0-62mph time of 6.8sec for the 2185kg iX3 – 0.4sec slower than for the 248bhp turbocharged four-cylinder petrol X3 sDrive30i. The iX3’s top speed is limited to 112mph to conserve range.

Energy is provided by an 80kWh gross (74kWh net) lithium ion battery pack that operates at 400V. By integrating the battery within the floorpan, BMW claims to have lowered the centre of gravity by up to 75mm over the conventional X3 for what are described as “noticably enhanced lateral dynamics”.

Unlike the i3, which uses Samsung battery cells, the iX3 uses cells from Chinese battery manufacturer CATL. BMW says the cobalt content has been significantly reduced, but the main reason to use CATL stems from a regulation that electric cars made in China must use a domestically produced battery.

BMW offers a number of different charging possibilities for the iX3, including 150kW DC rapid-charging for an 80% charge in 34 minutes.

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Comments
24

bol

14 July 2020

It's really encouraging that the technology is progressing so fast, but what a shame they've stuck it in something so big and unpleasant. I understand why, but I can't wait for a smaller EV with that sort of power and range. 

15 July 2020
bol wrote:

It's really encouraging that the technology is progressing so fast, but what a shame they've stuck it in something so big and unpleasant. I understand why, but I can't wait for a smaller EV with that sort of power and range. 

Big?  It doesn't look very big at all to me.

It could be worse.  I suppose.

14 July 2020

It's interesting to see 2 distinct approaches being taken towards EVs, use platforms/designs shared with exisiting petrol and diesel models, like the iX3 and Mercedes GLC, or dedicted EV ony platforms and designs like the VW ID.3 and I-Pace.

14 July 2020

Rear-wheel drive only for 60k BMW has lost sales already, am sure it will still as people are looking to change to EV but not in the numbers they sell now who knows. So going to hang on to my 4x4suv for a few more years now as two-wheel drive cant get me up to my mansion lol

14 July 2020

The iX3 seems to be a wasted opportunity. Why bother making a 4x4 with an electric motor with rear wheel drive? In winter the range, as with all electric cars, will be severely reduced but at least with rear wheel drive you will be going nowhere fast. BMW should have continued to develop the i3/i8 carbon fibre chassis technology to make a larger more useable car. Hopefully the rumoured i5 will be that car. 

14 July 2020

It's too big, it's not 4wd, it's a wasted opportunity. I just love the negativity by people who probably will never buy one of these.

I like it. I love the fact that it looks like an X3 tho I'm not struck on those alloys. I couldn't care less if the batteries don't use precious metals or any of that other Greenpeace nonsense - if I'm being forced to buy an EV by the powers that be then give me one that looks familiar. No interior shots but I hope these things also have a conventional BMW layout and don't follow the herd by controlling the car via a tablet.

X3 not 4wd? X3 owners may park on a kerb but that's as off-road as they venture. And if they have trouble getting to their mansions then they shouldn't be ordering one with summer tyres.  

14 July 2020

Presumably the 2 wheel drive and conservative design is aimed at the local Chinese market. Hopefully the i4 will be more interesting.

 

14 July 2020

The quality of the power train engineering here is woefull.

So compared to the identically sized Model Y LR Dual Motor it is:

200kg heavier

Rear wheel drive vs 4 wheel drive

440bhp vs 285bhp

6.8 vs 4.8 0-60mph

112mph vs 135mph (the "to protect range" is BS, it is more to conceal the fact that to get adequate acceleration they have to gear it down and that their motors are unable to over current at low RPM or run as far into the flux weakening zone at the top end, mid to upper range acceleration will be woefull)

Needs a slightly larger battery capacity to go 285miles vs 345 miles on the highly unrepresentative WLTP test. On the EPA test which is more representative of long range driving the Model Ys much better CDA will open up a bigger gap.

It might stand a chance if it is competitively priced but somehow I doubt that it will be.

BMW has been late to the party trying to produce a compelling EV. The I3 looked like a good start but it really showed off their attitude that EVs were novelty cars. This vehicle is hamstrung by being derrived from an ICE vehicle hence the extra 200hg of mass, even their EV "specific" platforms are going to be hamstrung by still needing to fit ICE and hybrid options.

14 July 2020

Looks like elon musks troll army are posting all at once to write negative comments about a competing car, shady astroturfing tactics from silicon valley

14 July 2020
nimmler wrote:

Looks like elon musks troll army are posting all at once to write negative comments about a competing car, shady astroturfing tactics from silicon valley

Not really, I'm British and my last car before my Model 3 Performance was a BMW M6 GC.

Boom

 

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