With the Jaguar I-Pace crossover hitting dealerships this fall, BMW is hard at work on its own electric SUV, as these new spy shots show. Our spies in Germany have caught the upcoming BMW iX3 conducting tests on public roads, and based on this prototype, it doesn’t look like we’ll have to wait long to see the production version.
BMW revealed the electric iX3 concept in April, looking almost production-ready. The production version is expected to share many of the same underpinnings as the regular X3, but with a specially developed rear axle subframe and chassis accommodations for the battery pack.
The concept utilized a 70-kilowatt-hour battery that powered a 270-hp electric motor. Using the global WLTP cycle, BMW estimates a driving range of about 249 miles, but we can’t say how that will translate to the EPA scale. The automaker claims the crossover is compatible with 150-kilowatt fast-charging stations, and can juice up to a full charge in as little as 30 minutes. Though those specs seem plausible for a production version, things may change going from concept to reality.
Don’t expect too many odd EV styling quirks, as the iX3 prototype in these photos looks much like the conventional X3. Still, expect blue exterior accents, aero-optimized wheels, and a unique “i” brand kidney grille to separate the EV from the rest of the X3 lineup. The crossover will be built in Shenyang, China, and is part of BMW’s plan to add 12 all-electric vehicles to its lineup by 2025.
For some comparison, the Jaguar I-Pace is powered by two electric motors that generate 394 hp and has a driving range of about 240 miles. Mercedes will reveal its first all-electric vehicle next week, the EQC crossover, which is based on the GLC-Class. The EV will develop about 400 hp and be capable of driving about 200-240 miles on a single charge.