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BMW has announced that it has produced 200,000 units of the electric i3, with sustained strong demand despite more electric cars hitting the market.

20 Oct 2020 | International News : Germany

Almost seven years after its market launch, the purely electrically powered and thus locally emission-free compact model is still in continuous high demand. At the BMW Group plant in Leipzig, the 200,000th BMW i3 model rolled off the production line on 15 October 2020. The i3s was finished in a metallic Fluid Black and accents in BMW i Blue.

The BMW i3 was BMW's first purely electrically powered large-scale serial model and also the company's first vehicle with a passenger cell made of Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic (CFRP). The Life module made of CFRP is part of a vehicle architecture specific to BMW i and designed for electric mobility from the outset.

The experienced gained from developing and manufacturing the i3 have helped to boost progress in electric mobility and lightweight construction
It is shaped in Leipzig from carbon fibre scrims and assembled in a unique process. This is followed by the union with the drive module, the aluminium chassis and high voltage battery. State-of-the-art manufacturing processes ensure that the body construction and assembly of the BMW i3 in Leipzig takes only about half the time required for conventional vehicles.

The success of the BMW i3 and the experience gained in developing and manufacturing it have significantly boosted progress in the fields of electric mobility and lightweight construction. In addition, the gross energy content of the high voltage storage unit was almost doubled from 22.6kWh to 42.2kWh without changing its size.

The range of the BMW i3 thus increased to between 285 to 310km in the WLTP test cycle. Based on the know-how acquired with the BMW i3, numerous innovations have also been achieved in the fields of drive, power electronics and charging technology.

The 200,000th i3 was produced for a customer from Saxony, Germany and will be delivered by the BMW branch in Leipzig 
The high-tech material CFRP is for example now also contributing to intelligent lightweight construction in the BMW 7 Series.

The BMW Group plant in Leipzig will continue to make a significant contribution to expanding electric mobility in the future. The site will become part of the BMW Group's international production network for battery modules as early as 2021.

By 2022, the BMW Group will invest more than 160 million SGD in establishing battery module production in Leipzig. In future, the lithium-ion cells supplied, will be assembled into standardised modules in a highly automated process.

These will then be assembled together with the connections to the vehicle, the control units and the cooling units in an aluminium housing specific to each model. By 2022 more than 150 employees will be working in the battery module production in Leipzig.

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