BMW’s new 3 Series plug-in hybrid prototype combines a four-cylinder TwinPower Turbo gas engine from the new Efficient Dynamics engine family with an electric motor and power electronics based on the eDrive technology used in the i3 and i8. It’s designed to offer performance on a par with the legacy 3 Series six-cylinder model, with significantly better fuel economy.
The drive system has a combined output of 245 hp (183 kW) and torque of 400 N·m (295 lb-ft). Average fuel consumption is approximately 117.5 mpg. Electric range is estimated at 22 miles.
Efficiency-boosting features include an integrated power electronics unit with a liquid-cooled inverter, and an 8-speed Steptronic transmission. Three driving modes – Comfort, Sport and Eco Pro – each offer different suspension settings, shift characteristics and hybrid operating strategies.
BMW has also outlined its plans for its Power eDrive next-generation electrification platforms, which will deliver “highly electrified” PHEVs with ever-greater efficiency and dynamism. In these PHEVs of the future, the Power eDrive electric drive system will contribute two-thirds of the vehicle’s combined output, and the amount of time the vehicle spends in electric mode will be maximized.
Future Power eDrive concepts will feature combined outputs over 500 kW, and lithium-ion batteries with capacities of up to 20 kWh. A pair of electric motors will create an all-electric all-wheel-drive system.