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BMW unveils new all-electric SUV at Auto China show

25 April 2018, 03:13 | Gina Pena

Say hello to the iX3, BMW's 'first' electric car

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The BMW Concept iX3 has been revealed at the Beijing Motor Show, previewing an electric X3 SUV for 2020 with 266bhp and a 70kWh battery.

Blue accents - a common trait across BMW's i3 and i8 models - appear across the auto, contrasting with the matte Moonstone Silver paint finish. BMW plans to begin producing the iX3 in 2020 at its joint-venture plant in Shenyang and will sell the model overseas, according to partner Brilliance China Automotive Holdings.

BMW has made significant progress in powertrain development, culminating in the fifth-generation eDrive electric system.

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This, the iX3 all-electric version of the X3 SUV, is BMW's first electric auto. Like other electric BMW products, there are blue highlights throughout the vehicle.

Until now, electrified hybrid iPerformance models such as the BMW 330e have been offered, but these could be augmented by pure EV i-branded versions - among which is the Tesla Model 3 and Model S-rivalling i4 that has also been rumoured for 2020. And so a Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) once again blazes a trail for a new and groudbreaking form of BMW's fabled driving pleasure. Entirely electric, it's powered by an electric motor that draws electricity from a 70-kWh battery pack which stores enough juice for about 250 miles of range in the European testing cycle. The trademark blue accents of BMW's "i" range are prominently featured.

Its batteries can also be charged at 150 kW fast-charging stations, and is expected to take just 30 minutes to charge at one of these stations - although there are a still limited number of them, as just 200 of these stations are expected to be implemented across Europe by the end of 2018. The closed area within the kidney reduces air resistance, providing aerodynamic benefits. The concept study is also fitted with light-alloy wheels in an aerodynamically optimised design. The styling of the BMW i Vision Dynamics is characterised by the pioneering design language developed exclusively for BMW i models.

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