BMW is set to expand its two best-selling model ranges, 3 Series and X5, with eDrive plug-in hybrid models launching in May.
Adding to the BMW 3 Series line-up is the new BMW 330e sedan which uses BMW’s eDrive technology, transferred from BMW’s ‘i’ sub-brand, to deliver a fully electric emission-free range of 37km. It is otherwise powered by a turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine which develops 135kW and 290Nm. Added to that is the plug-in hybrid system producing 65kW and 250Nm. Paired together the 330e makes 185kW and 420Nm when drawing from both sources. The dash to 100km/h from a standstill takes 6.1 seconds (claimed) with combined fuel consumption of 2.1L/100km (claimed).
Pricing for the 330e will start from $71,900. For the money, buyers will also get 19-inch lightweight alloy wheels, LED headlights, head-up display, DAB+ digital radio, Driving Assistant, Parking Assistant and Surround View for 360 degree visibility.
BMW’s X5 selection grows to include the X5 xDrive40e plug-in hybrid SUV, priced from $118,900. It is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine producing 180kW and 350Nm. The combustion engine is assisted by an electric motor and 9kWh lithium ion battery housed underneath the boot floor.
The electric motor in the X5 eDrive40e outputs 83kW and an instantly available 250Nm of torque for a combined total of 230kW and 450Nm. BMW claims a 0-100km/h sprint of 6.8 seconds and a combined fuel consumption figure of 3.3l/100km. The eDrive40e has a claimed range of 31km on electricity alone.
Purchasers of the X5 xDrive40e will also get 19-inch lightweight alloy wheels, adaptive headlights, adaptive suspension, Driving Assistant, Parking Assistant, Surround View, Comfort Access, leather upholstered dashboard, DAB+ digital radio, auto tailgate and an upgraded Harman/Kardon surround sound system.
Both cars offer eDrive specific features such as Acoustic Protection for pedestrians and ConnectedDrive eDrive services, the latter of which allows owners to check their car’s state of charge from a smart phone as well as remote locking/unlocking and efficiency monitoring. Users can also use the service to search for charging station locations.
BMW’s eDrive electric motors can be topped up with mains electricity from any standard power socket and at public charging stations. Regenerative braking technology charges the on-board batteries when on the move. The combined use of a traditional combustion engine and the electric engine results in sharper acceleration and reduced emissions overall.
Shawn Ticehurst, Head of Product and Market Planning at BMW Group Australia, says, “Many drivers will be able to complete their daily commute exclusively on electric power, recharging their car by plugging into a normal power point at home or work.”