BMW has just revealed a facelifted i3. It is as efficient and fun to drive as always, but now features some design changes as well as technological upgrades. However, we mostly want to speak about the new kid on the block – BMW i3S – sportier, more engaging version of the most popular BMW‘s electric car.
BMW is known for its sporty vehicles. However, i3 was not exactly the pinnacle of BMW dynamics. On the other hand, it did have potential now underlined even more. i3 got some styling upgrades. For example, the front and rear aprons now are a little bit more pronounced to emphasize the width of the car. The trademark BMW i Black Belt running from the bonnet over the roof to the car’s rear remained in its place, but now A-pillars and roof are also finished in black. Then there is a chrome-design trim strip running across the full width of the rear of the i3 and a large number of other exterior upgrades. However, all of them are minor – the car did not change dramatically. It did get some new LED lights – not both headlights and taillights and LED’s and turn signals are using this technology as well.
Inside buyers can choose from a larger list of options for seat covers. If you want to, you can go for a blue seatbelt as well – it matches some details from the outside. The new BMW i3s does not differ much in the interior except in some badges on the floor. However, i3S is supposed to be a much more dynamic car.
It has larger alloy wheels – 20-inch instead of 19-inch worn by a standard i3. Its track is 40 mm wider to give it more stability in the corners and the sports suspension brings the BMW i3s 10 mm closer to the ground. All of this make the car a little bit heavier – by about 20 kg – but added power makes i3s much faster than its normal sibling.
While electric powertrain in the new BMW i3 generates 125 kW (170 hp) of power and 250 Nm of torque, i3s makes 135 kW (184 hp) and 270 Nm. This makes the i3s a considerably faster electric car. It reaches a 100 km/h in just 6.9 seconds, while the normal i3 does it in 7.3, and up to its top speed of 160 km/h – 10 km/h more than its sibling. The difference is not dramatic, we are not sure about calling it a hot hatch, but it is definitely sportier enough for the drivers to feel it. However, i3s has a little bit shorter range – around 280 km compared to 290-300 km that the normal i3 can do.
BMW i3 is really an impressive car. A sportier version was always welcomed. However, one might wonder – why there isn’t a i3M? M division is not interested or chassis not suitable for some real hot hatch performance? Or maybe it is coming? We will have to wait and see into what i3s will develop.
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