After being leaked to the world in May, BMW has taken the covers off its updated iX3 in full — showcasing the new effective non-M benchmark in its popular X3 line-up.
As previously reported, the iX3’s retouch is much more mild than the changes BMW has recently deployed on its i4 sibling, as well as on the new 4 Series and M3/M4 performance twins.
The main change is a slightly larger grille up front, with the two kidneys now slightly touching each other. New headlights and tail lights also feature, with the latter getting a very different light signature.
Ironically, the biggest change to the iX3’s exterior is more to do with the spec sheet. All models now come with BMW’s M Sport visual pack as standard. This chucks in larger 20-inch wheels and a more aggressive body kit all round.
The cabin is a similar story of evolution over revolution, although that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The iX3’s innards get a 12.3-inch digital cluster capable of displaying satnav, on top of your standard cluster fare. This is reflected by a 12.3-inch primary screen in the centre.
A new centre console (complete with blue bits, so that you know it’s electric) appears, as does some new switchgear and a new smorgasbord of cabin customisation options. These include three ‘Vernasca leather’ colour options; black, white, or ‘Mocha’ brown.
Now to the iX3’s business end; its mechanicals. Each model gets an 80kWh lithium-ion battery which BMW says has an advanced ‘mass-to-capacity’ ratio. This is thanks to things like the aluminium cell casings and other refinements made between generations.
This is mated to a rear-mounted motor producing 210kW of power and 400Nm of torque, allowing the model to accelerate to 100km/h in 6.8 seconds on its way to an electronically limited 180km/h top speed.
Most curiously, the iX3 is rear-wheel drive instead of the all-wheel drive we’ve come to expect in X3 models. BMW says that this move means the model aligns neatly with the brand’s ‘Ultimate Driving Machine’ credo, although the move is also potentially a reflection of lack of interest in AWD among X3 clientele.
Range is rated at 460km on the WLTP cycle, meaning that a real-world figure is probably in the ballpark of 400km per charge. That’s fairly credible in a vehicle this size, and made better by the fact that the iX3 is 150kW fast-charging capable. Plug it into a fast charger for 10 minutes, and it will hoover up 100km worth of energy.
New Zealand iX3 pricing has yet to be confirmed, although if Australian pricing is anything to go by the model is unlikely to come anywhere near the government’s Clean Car Discount threshold. Our friends over the ditch will get just the one spec of iX3, and it’s priced from AU$114,900. Expect similar pricing in local showrooms.