In a rather sudden move, the German automaker has confirmed that their BMW iX3 electric SUV would not be making its way to the United States at any point in time.
According to Automotive News, a BMW spokesperson had told them that:
“At this time we do not have plans to bring the iX3 to the U.S. market,”
There was no further elaboration given to the decision, so your guess as to why this sudden news happened is as good as ours.
The BMW iX3 was supposed to be the start of BMW’s next generation of electric cars and was set to be their first car that would ride on its new fifth-generation electric powertrain which would also power the BMW i4 and BMW iNEXT. The automaker has been working hard on this new generation powertrain and has summarized it as such:
In the BMW iX3, EfficientDynamics reaches a new level. The vehicle’s fifth-generation BMW eDrive technology comprises a drive unit in which electric motor, system electronics and transmission are brought together into a central housing. As a result, the required installation space of the drive technology and its weight are considerably reduced. The ratio between motor output and weight of the drive system improves around 30 percent compared to the previous generation.
While we did know that the iX3 would have priority to the Chinese market given that it would actually be built there, BMW did state that the electric SUV would eventually be ready for export during the second half of next year. We can now see that that is not the case as we in the United States will not get to catch a glimpse of the next generation of BMW electric cars until the launch of the BMW i4 (hopefully).
This has been a trend with automakers as they try to prioritize their limited amount of cars to countries with stricter emission standards in an effort to avoid fines. Kia has delayed the release of the Soul EV in the US for this reason, and the Mercedes Benz EQC will also not arrive in the States until 2021.
Whether it is more strict emission standards in other countries, perceived lack of interest of American buyers, or both, it seems that even with electric cars gaining more and more momentum, America might be on the bottom of many automakers’ priority list.
What do you guys think? Is it not worth it for BMW to bring the iX3 here? Will we continue to see electric cars being delivered to other parts of the world before North America? Let me know what you think down in the comments below.