BMW iX3 Updated Before Making Its Initial European Debut

This facelifted all-electric BMW iX3 nets a larger grille and more tech before it arrives in Europe. 

With the X3 having been given a facelift earlier this year, it should come as no surprise then that its all-electric counterpart will be next in line to get its own nip and tuck too. What is nevertheless interesting here though is that this particular zero-emissions BMW SUV hasn’t actually reached its second birthday yet, nor has it indeed officially arrived in its home market of Europe too. 

That is because this made-in-China BMW is only supposed to land over in the old continent in a couple of weeks time, with its official unveiling set for the upcoming 2021 Munich motor show. So perhaps it does beg the reasonable question as to why it took the German automaker to that long to bring its all-electric X3 back over to Europe, the supposed bastion for EVs?

Now putting those questions aside for the time being however and focusing just on the updates made to the facelifted iX3 for now, this all-electric SUV unsurprisingly borrows heavily on the changes made to its recently revised fuel-burning twin. Hence the reason why this all-electric X3 has net itself a set of slimmer LED headlights and a larger kidney grille, albeit blanked off to signify its EV-ness. 

Borrowed also from the updated X3 are its ‘pincer claw contour’ rear tail light cluster, which now can better complement the sporty rear diffuser and more aggressive front fascia found on this facelifted all-electric SUV. That is because coming standard too on the revised iX3 is BMW’s M Sport package, which has brought with it the option to spec 20-inch M Aerodynamic alloys on this eco-crossover as well. 

On the topic of wheels meanwhile and touching further on what makes them go round, BMW has not been busy fettling around with the iX3’s powertrain during this round of updates. This in other words mean that this e-SUV still retains the same 210 kW rear-mounted motor fed by a 74 kWh battery pack, which unsurprisingly still equates to the same century sprint time of 7.4 seconds and 460 km WLTP-rated range as before. 

Where BMW has been busy with the iX3 however is in its interior, as this update has brought with it a larger 12.3-inch infotainment display to match the fully digital instrument cluster of the same size. This facelifted all-electric SUV also boasts a new gear selector lever and some new switchgear on its revised centre console, not to mention a new perforated Sensatec upholstery option for its standard sport seats.

BMW has taken the time to name the two trim levels of the iX3 destined for Europe too. The lower one of which is named the ‘Inspiring’ and comes with adaptive suspension, automatic tailgate operation, a panoramic glass roof, electrically adjustable seats, a sport leather steering wheel, a storage package and a three-zone automatic climate control; whereas the higher-end (and suitably-named) ‘Impressive’ trim adds acoustic glazing, Vernasca leather trim, a heads-up display, Harman Kardon Surround Sound System and BMW IconicSounds Electric.

The facelifted iX3 is set to enter production at the Shenyang factory in China for local and export markets come September, with sales beginning over in Europe from December. No official word yet on whether this all-electric crossover will be landing locally, but chances are high seeing that BMW Malaysia has dropped multiple hints alluding to its arrival in the past already. 

PRESS RELEASE: Detailed model update for the BMW iX3 optimises the car’s sporting aura and the driving pleasure it offers, as well as ease of operation and the premium character of the interior. Fresh design accents underscore the close conceptual and technological links between the all-electric Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) for the premium midsize class and the BMW iX and BMW i4.

New BMW iX3 builds on its profile as a trailblazer for a new era of electric mobility. First model to feature fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology. Advanced overall concept coherence enables unique combination of sporting prowess, exceptional efficiency, and long-distance ability with a range of up to 460 kilometres (286 miles) in the WLTP test cycle.

European premiere for the new BMW iX3 at the IAA Mobility 2021 event in Munich. Production to get underway at the BMW Brilliance Automotive joint venture’s Shenyang facility in China in September 2021 – both for the local market and for export.

Front end with increased presence thanks to larger BMW kidney grille, headlights around ten millimetres slimmer than before and newly sculpted front apron. Muscular surfacing at the rear. Striking, three-dimensional LED rear lights. Model-specific accents in BMW i Blue at the front and rear.

New BMW iX3 with standard M Sport package. New M aerodynamic wheels in 20-inch format optionally available as an alternative to the standard 19-inch aerodynamic wheels. Adaptive LED Headlights also included as standard. BMW Laserlight can be ordered as an option.

Fully digital screen grouping now with a 12.3-inch instrument cluster and an enlarged control display matching its dimensions. Newly designed control panel on the centre console for the gear selector lever, BMW Controller, Start/Stop button and the buttons for the Driving Experience Control switch and parking brake.

Sport seats in the new Sensatec perforated upholstery variant and interior trim strips in the new Aluminium Rhombicle dark finish come as standard. BMW i Blue accents on the gear selector lever, Start/Stop button and steering wheel.

Highly integrated drive system with electric motor, transmission and power electronics in a single housing. Space-saving arrangement in the rear axle subframe, maximum output: 210 kW/286 hp, peak torque: 400 Nm (295 lb-ft). Power sent to the rear wheels, acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.8 seconds.

Model-specific high-voltage battery with a gross energy content of 80 kWh. Combined Charging Unit enables direct current (DC) fast-charging at a rate of up to 150 kW. 10-minute fast charge adds around 100 kilometres (62 miles) of range in the WLTP cycle. User-friendly and low-cost charging in the international BMW Charging network with a single registration.

Familiar BMW i holistic approach to sustainability throughout the value chain. Design of the electric motor enables use of rare earth metals to be avoided in the manufacture of the rotor. Extensive use of secondary raw materials. BMW Group oversees monitored procurement process for cobalt and lithium for high-voltage batteries. Manufacture of battery cells and the car as a whole powered by green energy alone.

Two equipment lines to choose from: “Inspiring” includes metallic paintwork, adaptive suspension, automatic tailgate operation, a panoramic glass roof, electrically adjustable seats, a sport leather steering wheel, a storage package and a three-zone automatic climate control system with pre-heating and pre-conditioning function. “Impressive” adds 20-inch light-alloy wheels, acoustic glazing, Vernasca leather trim, BMW Head-Up Display, Harman Kardon Surround Sound System and BMW IconicSounds Electric.

Exceptionally wide selection of driver assistance systems come as standard, including Driving Assistant Professional with the Steering and Lane Control Assistant, Active Cruise Control with Stop&Go function, automatic Speed Limit Assist and route monitoring. Also standard: Parking Assistant with Reversing Assist Camera and Reversing Assistant.

BMW Live Cockpit Professional with cloud-based navigation system BMW Maps and BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant as standard. Also standard: smartphone Integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto preparation, Remote Software Upgrade and other digital services from BMW Connected.

Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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