After numerous i3 concepts, lots of testing sessions and numerous teaser images, BMW finally unveiled the new i3 electric car in its production form. The model is the first from BMW’s i sub-brand and opens a new era for electro mobility at BMW. Like everyone else, we are excited to see the i3, but the real prize is the still-in-development i8 .
The i3 was built on a new LifeDrive architecture that will help reduce the car’s weight by 250 to 300 kg (551 to 661 pounds). The LifeDrive concept consists of two horizontally separated, independent modules. The Drive module integrates the battery, drive system, and structural and crash functions into a single construction within the chassis. Working in conjunction with the Drive module is the Life module, which consists primarily of a high-strength and extremely lightweight passenger cell made from CFRP. These aspects of car building will lead the way to a whole new process for building cars. A process that will be simpler, more flexible, and use less energy.
UPDATE 07/29/2013: The new BMW i3 finally made its world debut today after undergoing years of testing. Sales will begin in the second quarter of 2014.
Updated 10/10/2013: BMW confirmed that the new i3 will go on sale in the U.S. market in the second quarter of 2014. The battery electric model will have a base price of $41,350, while the range-extender model will have a starting price of $45,200. We have also added a new set of more than 100 new high res images, so check the picture gallery to see them all!
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