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by Brett Davis

A recent spy video posted on YouTube has confirmed the new BMW i3 electric vehicle will continue BMW’s tradition of rear-wheel drive layouts. The i3 prototype was spotted undergoing extreme winter testing in norther Sweden.

Although there are various rumours and much speculation surrounding BMW suggesting that the company is developing a front-wheel drive model, it seems one of the most likely candidates of such a layout isn’t turning out to be so likely after all. As seen here, the upcoming new hatch will be rear-wheel drive.

Featuring a fully electric powertrain, two electric motors are said to produce around 96kW to 100kW of combined power. Range for the batteries is said to be around 200km on one charge. Not only is 100kW very reasonable for a pint-size hatch, the BMW i3 will also be very light as the chassis will be made from aluminium and the passenger safety cell will be made from carbon fibre.

BMW has said it is planning to sell around 30,000 BMW i3s per year once production is in full swing sometime in 2013.