BMW ActiveHybrid 3 Details Released

BMW released details today about the all-new BMW ActiveHybrid 3.

In the words of BMW, “the ActiveHybrid 3 blends BMW’s TwinPower Turbo 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder and eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission are combined to an electric motor powered by a high-voltage battery.”

Combined, the inline-six and electric motor provide 335 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque, an increase of 13 percent and 11 percent respectively. In addition to the boost available for the internal combustion engine, the electric motor is capable of powering the ActiveHybrid 3 emissions free for speeds up to 45 mph (70 kph) for distances up to 2.5 miles (four kilometers).

The 2013 BMW ActiveHybrid 3 will arrive in U.S. showrooms this fall at an MSRP of $50,195 including destination and handling.

BMW ActiveHybrid 3_engine

Electric motor and eight-speed automatic transmission share the same housing.
BMW is expanding the availability of its hybrid drive technology with its next ActiveHybrid production model.

The BMW ActiveHybrid 3’s synchronous electric motor is powered by a lithium-ion high-voltage battery housed under the luggage compartment between the wheel arches. This provides optimal protection for the battery and helps to ensure a well-balanced weight distribution.

The battery cooling system is integrated into the air conditioning cooling circuit. The battery is comprised of 96 cells and has an effective energy capacity of 675 watt-hours.

Since the lithium-ion high-performance battery is packaged under the trunk, the load capacity of the BMW ActiveHybrid 3 is reduced only marginally compared with other BMW 3 Series Sedan models. The battery is encased in a special housing and is fitted in a protected position between the wheel arches, which also offers optimal security in a crash.

BMW ActiveHybrid 3_battery

This space-saving integration under the trunk allows for a completely level load floor and means the rear seat backrests with optional 40:20:40 split-folding remain fully functional. The positioning of the high-voltage battery near to the rear axle also contributes to the balanced weight distribution of the BMW ActiveHybrid 3.

In addition to its conventional 14-volt electrical system, the BMW ActiveHybrid 3 is also equipped with a high-voltage electrical system of 317 volts. Both the electric motor and the air conditioning compressor are powered exclusively by the lithium-ion high-voltage battery, via the high-voltage electrical system. This allows the desired interior climate to be maintained even when the internal combustion engine is not running – i.e. when the car is at a standstill, operating purely on electric power or in coasting mode.

BMW ActiveHybrid 3_logo

The stationary climate control can also be used to cool the interior before getting into the vehicle.

Up to a speed of 45 mph (75 kph), the BMW ActiveHybrid 3 can operate in all-electric mode for zero emissions when coasting and in city traffic. Fully charged, the lithium-ion high-voltage battery provides an all-electric driving range of up to 2.5 miles (four kilometers) at an average speed of about 20 mph (35 kph).

The BMW ActiveHybrid 3 is the second hybrid model from BMW – after the BMW ActiveHybrid 5 – to use an in-line six-cylinder engine in its powertrain. This in-line six-cylinder engine has won the international “Engine of the Year” award two years in a row.

The six-cylinder powerplant’s BMW TwinPower Turbo technology comprises a twin-scroll turbocharger, High Precision Direct Injection and VALVETRONIC fully variable valve timing. This technology package improves throttle response and revving ability as well as refinement and efficiency, while an aluminum crankcase also optimizes weight.

Coasting mode, a new development for the BMW ActiveHybrid models, boosts efficiency by shutting the internal combustion engine down not only when the vehicle is stationary, or when driving in town.

Coasting mode switches off the gas engine and disconnects it from the driveshaft. From this point on, the ActiveHybrid 3 coasts soundlessly, with zero emissions and with no engine braking effect. The efficiency improvements are further enhanced by reduced rolling resistance tires.

In ECO PRO mode, the coasting function is available at any speed up to 100 mph (160 kph), while in Comfort mode it operates between 37 and 50 mph (60 and 80 kph) when the brakes are applied lightly.

In Sport and Sport+ mode the coasting function is not available.


  • Greg

    I must have missed the part where it said what MPG it got.

  • Anonymos

    What about the MPG. Its surprising that there is no reference to mileage in Hybrid article. Only good thing is it uses Li Ion battery.

    How many such wasteful performance hybrids will hit the market and flop.

  • john iv

    Edmonds inside line has the mpg as TBD. They said it can go all electric for 2.5 miles at speeds up to 37 mph. The article above says 20 mph. ???

  • Jeff Cobb

    The quote above is taken straight from the BMW press release:

    “Fully charged, the lithium-ion high-voltage battery provides an all-electric driving range of up to 2.5 miles (four kilometer) at an average speed of about 20 mph (35 km/h).”

  • Al Bunzel

    BMW is playing catch up to Lexus.

    If BMW wants to surpass Lexus, they should consider:
    * having a plug in option;
    * have a longer range in EV only mode, say at least 50 miles – most people will never need to use the gasoline motor;

    Why BMW chose to stick in a 3.0 Liter turbo charged 6 cylinder is beyond comprehension for me.

    If it had to have a gasoline motor, I would have gone for a smaller 3 cylinder turbo that is easy to work on and service, and have a bigger electric motor. With a bigger electric motor, there is more torque at lower speeds where it is needed more and also, regen braking is stronger which means less brake wear. This means more convenience for car owners and lower servicing costs. This would also help with meeting emission standards which seem to get tougher and tougher every year.

  • MS

    This bmw refer 38mpg under EU test circle

    The standard version is up to 34 mpg (24 city), so the hybrid only gain 4mpg or am I missing something.

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