BMW Group made history at the 2018 Beijing International Automotive Exhibition with the unveiling of the brand’s first ever all-electric vehicle. As expected, the electric vehicle (EV) is indeed the BMW Concept iX3 which the company have hinted previously.
The all-electric SUV or Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) as BMW calls them, sits on a new flexible architecture platform that will underpin all future BMW models. The new platform can accommodate all types of drivetrain layout – front, rear and even all-wheel drive – and all forms of powertrains from pure combustion engine to all-electric and everything in between.The premiere of the Concept iX3 marks the debut of BMW’s fifth-generation eDrive system that boasts lower weight, larger scalability and more compact in size. This innovation allows the company to apply electrification to more models in the future.
On the iX3’s application, the fifth-gen eDrive electric motor is capable of generating a maximum output of over 200 kW (270 hp), although the company did not specify which axle(s) power will be deployed onto. Thanks to a 70 kWh capacity lithium-ion battery pack, the iX3 has a claimed pure electric range of more than 400 km.
Another innovation the fifth-gen eDrive boasts is rapid charging technology that allows the battery pack to be fully charged in just 30 minutes when hooked up to a fast-charging station (150 kW).
Visually, the iX3 spots the BMW i brand’s new kidney grille and brand emblem. The closed kidney grille with blue accents reduces wind resistance and give the car better aerodynamics. Elsewhere, the iX3 is similar to the G01 X3 from the headlamps, taillamps and overall profile. The only other tell-tale sign that this is an electrified SAV is the charging port cut out on the front fender.The future production version of BMW Concept iX3 will be built in Shenyang, China managed by BMW Brilliance Automotive joint venture although the company did not commit to a timeline.