The BMW i3, the BMW Group’s initial model running on electric power alone, has debuted as the first premium car with an all-electric drive system.
The BMW i3 is the result of an integrated development approach aimed at cutting fuel consumption and emissions in urban traffic. The substructure of the passenger compartment is made from carbon fiber and the chassis is aluminum.
The carmaker says it will offer fast charging capability as an option, allowing i3 owners to regain up to 80 percent of charge in as little as 20 minutes, delivering 80 to 100 miles of driving between charges.
Charging can be accomplished from a conventional domestic power socket, BMW i Wallbox or public charging station.
The vehicle concept and drive system were developed entirely in-house by the BMW Group.
The BMW i3 generates a maximum output of 125 kW/170 hp and peak torque of 250 Newton metres (184 lb-ft).
The BMW i3, built in Leipzig, Germany, will be presented to the public at large at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt, Germany in September. It has an estimated 0-100 kilometer (62 miles) speed of 7.2 seconds. It will debut in Europe with a starting price of 34,950 Euros or about $46,000.
The new BMW won’t be available in the United States until 2014.