Could This Be BMW's Game-Changing EV?
BMW Philippines introduced the first-ever BMW iX3 to the Philippines on Tuesday (January 24).
This is the second fully electric BMW automobile introduced in the country. The first was the larger iX model that was launched late last year.
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The iX3 is essentially an electric vehicle that uses the X3 SAV (Sports Activity Vehicle, as BMW calls it) platform and the fifth generation of BMW eDrive technology. It also utilizes the latest version of the electric motor, power electronics, charging technology and high-voltage battery, adding to the performance as well as improved electric power consumption and range of the model.
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The new features of the BMW eDrive technology include an innovative charging unit, which sends power to both the 400V battery and the 12V on-board power supply. This means that plugging the vehicle into a direct current fast-charging station facilitates charging outputs of up to 150 kW. BMW says that the high-voltage battery can now be charged from zero to 80 percent of its full capacity in around 34 minutes. The first-ever BMW iX3 is compatible with all Type 2 public charging stations in the country.
The iX3 also features Adaptive Recuperation, which improves efficiency and with the intensity of the Brake Energy Regeneration designed to adapt to the road situation described by data from the navigation system and the driver assistance system sensors, allowing optimal consumption and regeneration of electric power. BMW’s use of high-quality aluminum castings and thermoplastics, and the absence of rare earths, and the across-the-board use of green electricity in production, including the cells for the high-voltage battery, gives an impressive low carbon footprint. The power density of the electric motor is said to be 30 percent greater than that of all the existing fully electric vehicles from the BMW.
The new drive system unit of the iX3 is rated with a maximum output of 286 horsepower and a peak torque of 400 Nm. It can sprint from zero to 100 kph in 6.8 seconds, while top speed is electronically limited to 180 kph. It also has a range of up to 460 kilometers in the WLTP test cycle, or almost as far as Manila to Laoag City, Ilocos Norte on one single charge.
Inside, the BMW Live Cockpit Professional comes with an on-board navigation system and a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster and 12.3-inch widescreen display which operates on the iDrive Operating System 7.0. There is wireless smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto preparation, Remote Software Upgrade, and wireless charging as well. It also has a Harman Kardon speaker system for hi-fidelity sound.
“We are proud to say that BMW in the Philippines now has a product that flawlessly combines the familiarity of BMW’s Sports Activity Vehicle DNA and the excellent capability of a fully electric motor,” said Spencer Yu, president of SMC Asia Car Distributors Corp at the launch. “The iX3 is the perfect choice for customers who want to take their first step toward a truly sustainable driving experience.
“We are hoping that the recent issuance of Executive Order No. 12, reducing export taxes for electric vehicles, will help shift the market towards electrification in order to create a more sustainable planet for future generations,” Yu added.
The timing of BMW’s introduction of the iX3 seems impeccable, since President Bongbong Marcos signed EO Number 12, suspending the import duties of electric vehicles and its components, and helping pave the way for the further electrification of the Philippine automotive industry.
Is the market ready for another BMW EV? The luxury German brand made sure the price and specs will give buyers of luxury SUV (or SAVs) a second look at the iX3 M Sport, which retails at P4.590 million. As reference, the price of a conventional internal combustion engine-powered BMW X3 xDrive20d Professional is at P4.29 million.
Every purchase of the model comes with a BMW i Wallbox that will be installed by BMW i partners in the customer’s home, as well as a five-year BMW factory warranty, eight-year high-voltage battery warranty, and six-year BMW Service Inclusive warranty.