Sporty handling is BMW’s signature. Now it’s bringing that to its electric i3 for 2018.
BMW is giving the i3 its first face-lift since its arrival in 2014. But more importantly, it’s rolling out the all-new i3s. The ‘s’ is the key there and it stands for Sport.
The i3s sports version pumps 184-horsepower with 199 lb-ft of torque by Bimmer’s preliminary calculations. That’s slightly up from the standard i3’s 170-horsepower with 184 lb-ft of torque. Both models, however, use a new more powerful 94-Ah lithium-ion battery engine.
The i3s’ extra shot of power comes from a 0.4-inch drop in ride height and a 1.57-inch wider track. This sporty stance pairs with special sport suspension springs, dampers, and anti-roll bars. That allows it to shave a good 0.4-seconds off the standard i3’s 0-60 time to a not-too-shabby 6.8-seconds. It also brags a 7-mph faster top speed of 100-mph.
Both models are of course emission-free, but they also offer a two-cylinder gasoline Range Extender add-on. This little engine that could adds 87 miles to the otherwise standard 97-mile range for a total of 180-miles.
The i3’s design stays mostly the same, there’s no identity crisis here. It does ditch the cutesie round fog lights in favor of sportier looking air intakes and streamlined fog lights. The full LED headlights, standard on both the i3 and i3s, are horizontal. Tweaks to both bumpers to show off the width of the car. The bumper includes more matte black and a u-shape design.
The cabin of the i3 focuses on spaciousness and a feeling of ‘lightness.’ There are four individual seats and the doors open in opposite directions highlighting the lack of a fixed B-pillar. Materials throughout play-off the electric eco feel. Renewable resources and recycled material make up over 80-percent all the visible materials.
The i3 offers a Brown Natural Leather and Carum Spice Grey Wool Cloth as the new Giga World interior option. The i3s offers special BMW i Blue seat belts to make it stand apart. Change the standard 20-inch wheels to black on the i3s at no-extra cost.
Both the i3 and i3s will make their official debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show next month. At that point, look for more details regarding pricing and when they go on sale.