Tesla has already taken away the middle class in Europe from BMW with the Model 3: last year, the electric car registered more new registrations than any other vehicle in this class, including the popular BMW 3 Series, and this was repeated in Germany this February. . With the i4, the Bavarian company now has a direct competitor for the Tesla Model 3 in its range, but it costs significantly more and has BMW’s new design with a giant kidney, which is not liked by everyone. The 3 Series is now also available as an electric car at lower prices and in a more discreet design, but only for the Chinese market.
Solid BMW electric car only for China
There were already hints of an electric BMW 3 Series at the end of 2021, when a record was leaked at the Chinese Ministry of Economic Affairs. Images showed that the electric car looks almost exactly like the conventional variant from the outside. The name has also been known before: BMW decided on the name i3, which has so far been used in Europe for another electric car.
Although the BMW i3, which was launched in Europe in 2013, is gradually being phased out, the choice of name was already an indication that the purely electric-powered 3 Series will not be available in the West. And on Thursday, this suspicion was confirmed: “Custom-built for China,” the first all-electric 3 Series will launch this May, the company announced in a press release. The full model designation is BMW i3 eDrive35L. The L indicates that this is the long wheelbase version of the sedan, which is popular in China.
In the text it is repeated again that the i3 will be produced exclusively for China in the country, so there is no possibility for Western markets. At the same time, it would make the switch to friends of conventional cars as easy as almost no other model, at least visually, while the European i3 still looked very special and polarized the design of the i4 and other new electric cars from BMW. . In any case, the data that is now given for the electric 3 Series does not sound spectacular, but it is solid: 66 kilowatt hours of useful battery capacity for a range of 526 kilometers according to the relatively smooth Chinese standard, charging with up to 95 kilowatts . .
Tesla Model 3 with better data
However, this means that the autonomy and charging capacity values are below what Tesla already offers with its smallest Model 3 from and in China: according to the local standard, for example, it can travel 556 kilometers with a charge at even though it is smaller. battery. BMW did not name prices for the i3 in China on Thursday. According to a local observer, the electric car will be sold there from 350,000 renminbi, the equivalent of almost 50,000 euros. In Tesla you would almost get the Model 3 in the medium equipment with all-wheel drive and a range of 675 kilometers in China.