The BMW i3 eDrive35L is an electric sedan launched on the Chinese market. Don’t confuse this vehicle and the 2013 BMW i3 hatchback. The BMW i3 eDrive35L sedan costs 349,900 RMB (55,000 USD) in China. It is powered by a single electric motor (rear-wheel drive) with 210 kW (286 hp) and 400 Nm of torque. With the 70.3 kWh battery, the i3 can run up to 526 km (CLTC).
The BMW i3 is made by a joint venture between BMW and Brilliance called BMW-Brilliance. This electric sedan is based on the long-wheelbase variant of the BMW 3-Series, also made by the JV. The i3 eDrive35L is 43 mm longer, 19 mm wider, and 18 mm higher than the 3-Series Li. The exact dimensions are 4872/1846/1481 mm with a wheelbase of 2966 mm. So the i3’s wheelbase is just 9 mm shorter than the standard-wheelbase BMW 5-Series and 139 mm shorter than the long-wheelbase BMW 5Li, which BMW-Brilliance also makes.
BMW i3 Exterior
The BMW i3 eDrive35L’s front bumper, rear bumper, side skirts, and grille are redesigned. The i3 also has new lights. Other features of the i3’s design are 225/45 R19 wheels with an aerodynamic pattern, and a blue trim that goes all around the car. Another quirk of the i3 sedan is two plugs in different places.
On the front left of this EV is the GB/T AC charging port, and on the rear right is the GB/T DC charging port. The placement of these ports is bizarre, and it’s not clear why BMW did it.
BMW i3 Interior
The interior of the BMW i3 adopts the latest family design. It strongly reminds the i4 with a large twin-screen with a 14.9-inch center console screen and a 12.3-inch instrument panel. These screens got the newest iDrive 8 system, focused on the Chinese market. It has 24 pre-installed apps, including third-party apps like WeChat, QQ Music, and Ximalaya. It also supports OTA updates. There are a few physical buttons on the center console. The i3 also got a small and elegant gear shifter.
An exciting feature of the i3 is the Harman Kardon audio system with 17 speakers. The electric sedan also has a large panoramic roof and ambient lighting. The i3 got a two-color scheme: red-black and brown. We are sure that there will be other interior colors. Worth mentioning that the i3 got adaptive air suspension as standard.
BMW i3 Performance
The BMW i3 eDrive35L is equipped with a 70.3 kWh ternary (NMC) battery for the 526 km range (CLTC). The i3 can gain 10-80% battery in 35 minutes with a fast charger. Regarding performance, the i3 got one electric motor for 210 kW (286 hp) and 400 Nm. With a drag coefficient of 0.24 Cd, the i3 eDrive35L can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 6.2 seconds. As for the top speed, it reaches 180 km/h.
BMW i3 Pricing
The starting price of the i3 eDrive35L is 349,900 RMB (55,000 USD). But for this price, the electric sedan hasn’t got a lot of options: 360-degree surround-view cameras (8,600 RMB extra), autonomous parking system (8,600 RMB extra), full-speed adaptive cruise-control (5,900 RMB extra), driver seat’s lumbar adjustment (1,400 RMB extra), etc. So the base model BMW i3 hasn’t got much on board.