BMW i3 Electric Car Test Rides

BMW’s pioneering i3 electric vehicle is shaping up to be one of the most exciting EVs of 2013. It employs BMW’s trademark sporty rear wheel drive which helps it stand out from the rest of the electric vehicle crowd.

The BMW i3 is also a fresh start – its a completely designed electric vehicle chassis, not a modified gasoline chassis, and it uses exotic lightweight materials to save weight and maximize range. All of this adds up to 1250 kg, which is significantly lighter than the 1567 kg Nissan Leaf.

BMW recently invited a few select journalist into the northern winter wonderland known as BMW’s Munich-Ismaning proving ground to ride along on a drive in the i3 electric vehicle. By all reports, the acceleration and ride was excellent, but it will be at least mid-summer before journalists themselves get to drive the i3.

BMW did tell journalists they have tooled up their factory to produce 30,000 cars a year, and can extend that to 50,000 per year if the i3 really takes off. Other tidbits of information released was that sales of the BMW i3 would start in November of 2013, and it will cost around €40,000 in Europe, with an additional €3000 if you choose for the 2-cylinder range extender.

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Alan Moeller

By Alan Moeller

EV car evangelist! I read, watch, write, research and chat all things electric cars. Got a lead on a story? Shoot me a message on Facebook.

1 comment

  1. The I3 won’t take off here in Europe, it’s just too expensive, but it will probably find a few homes in the U.S where sales taxes are mouth watering low.

    You see car makers don’t realise that they need to make electric cars cheap for everyone, those that can afford luxury car prices will stick to luxury cars, they don’t have to worry about filling the tank, so the people who would benefit most are those who actually feel the pain of filling the tank, such as ordinary working Europeans that have to pay huge fuel taxes, These are the people that will buy electric cars in large numbers if they are cheap enough and good enough.

    Electric cars would at the very least need an ultra fast charging ability of 150 kw, that would revolutionise electric cars, 50 kw DC charging is way too slow.

    You can live with a 100 mile range if chargers are everywhere, especially really fast charging 5-10 mins absolute max.

    Longer lasting batteries that can take the fast charging, and reassurance that they will buy back the old pack and give you a new one at a decent price, as there will still be a lot of value in those spent packs. Currently I doubt there will be any value in an electric car after 5 years and say, 80,000+ miles especially when the likes of Nissan say they will only “repair” a pack and not provide a new one.

    Not only that but Nissan seem to think that it’s acceptable to say the Leaf’s battery is good even at 75% capacity, A battery may, in the battery world of cell phones and laptops be good at 75% or above but not in a car with 100 and less miles, especially if it can only do 70 max in the cold at 50-60 mph

    The car makers need to do a lot better and fast. And the Governments need to get their acts together and install fast chargers everywhere and not just in commuter areas but in places of tourism, beaches, parks etc where people like to take weekend trips or holidays with the family, you see most people want a car that can do everything a current car can.

    The car makers need to listen to what people WANT not to what they think we want.

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