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by Brett Davis

BMW has been spotted carting around a BMW i3 prototype in Germany. These spy shots show the electric city car in its most revealing guise yet, showing some of the headlight design as well as the major pillars and roofline.

Like the BMW i3 Concept, the production version will use a carbon fibre body which will help to keep weight to a minimum. The lightweight nature will assist efficiency by creating an easier workload for the electric powertrain.

The BMW i3 is powered by an electric motor that is positioned over the rear axle. It produces 125kW of power and 250Nm of torque, which is enough to propel the city car from 0-100km/h in under eight seconds and onto a limited top speed of 150km/h.

Full production specifications are yet to be finalised, although the i3 is expected to match the concept’s driving range of 130-160km. BMW says the batteries can be recharged in around six hours using a conventional socket, or charged to 80 per cent in one hour using a fast-charge up system.

Other notable features include reverse-opening rear doors (which can only be opened when the front door is opened first), four seats and a 200-litre boot capacity.

A production version of the BMW i3 is set to go on sale in Europe in 2013, and is expected to arrive in Australia by 2014.




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