Since its launch in November 2013, the BMW i3 has been one of the front runners in the small electric car segment. Now, the new i3 94Ah will replace the current 60Ah model, which means improved power consumption, and increased range and more power. 170hp is enough to take the i3 from 0-62mph in just 7.3 seconds as well as an ‘everyday driving’ range of 195 miles in the standard model, a 50 per cent improvement over the outgoing version. The new 94Ah battery will be available in both the standard and Range Extender models. Despite this better all round performance, the battery is without structural change or greater exterior dimensions and rather greater optimisation of what’s inside.
The Range Extender in the higher model produces 38hp and powers a generator to produce more electricity. Meaning, when the charging level of the battery drops to a certain level, the Range Extender kicks in and allows a further 81 miles of everyday driving. This equates to a total range 276 miles. The Range Extender doesn’t affect luggage space either. Luggage compartment volume remains unchanged at 260 litres and can be extended to 1,100 litres with the rear seats folded down. The Range Extender model hits the 62mph mark in 8.1 seconds and emits 12g/km in CO2 emissions compared to the standard model’s perfect 0g/km. Both models will max out at a top speed off 93mph.
The BMW i3 94Ah can be distinguished from the current model now it has received the Protonic Blue paintwork with Frozen Grey metallic highlight, a colour way previously reserved for the BMW i8. Further personalisation improvements include the interior trims being available as separate options across all four interior worlds: Loft, Lodge, Suite and the new Atelier world which comes as standard in the new model. This standard world features Neutronic cloth in Aragats Grey with i Blue highlights on the front seats as well as a black leather steering wheel. The dark oak trim comes as standard on the Suite interior design, but is also now optional on all other trim levels as is the eucalyptus wood trim.
The standard BMW i3 94Ah starts at £27,830, and the Range Extender version starting at £30,980, each coming with a £4,500 OLEV Government grant. The new BMW i3 will be available from July 2016.