BMW India showcased the improved i3 electric city car at the Auto Expo earlier this year but did not make any announcement regarding the launch plans. There were reports that the luxury car maker is currently studying the Indian market to introduce its premium electric car and the recent spotting of a prototype on Indian roads confirms this development.
If everything goes well, the new BMW i3 may be launched in India sometime next year. Like several other manufacturers, BMW must be waiting to have some clarity on India’s electric vehicle related policies. With NEMMP 2020 and FAME schemes, things have started moving in the right direction but the conditions are not quite optimum yet for automakers to bet big on the Indian EV market.
The BMW i3 which received significant updates at last year’s Frankfurt Motor Show is available in regular i3 and sportier i3S variants. The entry-level model is powered by an electric motor which produces 170 hp and 250 Nm of torque. The i3S boasts of a more powerful motor which has 184 hp and 270 Nm of torque.
The i3S differentiates itself from the regular i3 by means of a sports suspension that lowers the ride height by 0.3 inches and widens the track by 1.5 inches. The sporty variant also gets glossy black finish for the grille, new front and rear aprons, black roof, and 20-inch alloy wheels.
The i3S can accelerate from rest to ton in 6.9 seconds compared to the regular model’s time of 7.2 seconds. The top speed stands at 100 mph (160 kmph). The top-end model has a claimed range of 97 miles which can be extended up to 180 miles by opting for a range extender.
The BMW i3 and i3S come with a comprehensive list of ConnectedDrive features as well as safety systems. If BMW India launches the i3, the move could prompt other premium luxury car makers to bring in their respective rivals to the country.