Costs & verdict
Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is
The BMW iX3 matches the Audi e-Tron’s maximum charging rate of 150kW, meaning a 10-80% charge can be gained in around 30 minutes. The only trouble is that there aren’t many public CCS charging points in the UK capable of delivering that much power, so on those occasions you need to travel more than 200 miles, you’re likely to find yourself plugging in at a 50kW charger on the motorway. Do that and a 10-80% charge will take just over an hour.
That’s why anyone planning to do very long journeys on a regular basis would do well to consider the Tesla Model 3 saloon, which gives you access to the US brand’s widespread Supercharger network for more reliable fast charging. However, if you intend to do most of your charging at home using a regular 7kW wallbox, a full charge (0-100%) of the iX3’s 80kWh battery will take 11hr 30min.
Having a starting price above £50,000 means the iX3 isn’t eligible for the government’s £3000 electric car grant, but it still looks good value next to the Jaguar I-Pace and Mercedes EQC. And while the Audi E-tron is available for similar money, that’s for the entry-level 50 version that will struggle to cover 160 miles on a full charge in real-world driving. You’ll need the 55 version to even get close to the iX3’s range, at which point you’ll be spending a lot more cash.
So, at least when it comes to big electric SUVs, the iX3 is temptingly priced and will cost a lot less to run than a petrol or diesel version of the X3. The iX3 is also a seriously cheap company car, thanks to the tempting benefit in kind (BIK) tax rates available on all pure electric cars.
There are only two trim levels to choose between: Premier Edition and Premier Edition Pro. The former gives you plenty of luxuries, including 20in aerodynamic alloys, a powered tailgate, a panoramic sunroof and leather seats (heated in the front), while range-topping Premier Edition Pro adds a head-up display (speed limit and sat nav directions are projected onto the windscreen), auto-dipping headlights and keyless entry. You also get the IconicSounds acceleration sound effects that we talked about earlier.
Lexus UX300e 2020