2014 BMW i3 Priced From $41,350 + Options

2014 BMW i3 Priced From $41,350 + Options

AmpedRealtor | 22 luglio 2013

Another Nissan Leaf, just from BMW... These companies don't get it, who is going to buy an EV with 80-100 miles of range per charge? No charging infrastructure either - you are at the mercy of whatever Level 2 or DC fast chargers are available. I find many in town, but few along major driving routes to get you from point A to point B when you have such limited range.

This will be a flop. I sometimes wonder if companies announce such crippled EVs because they secretly don't want them to succeed.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

A range extender for another 100km or so is optional. If someone really doesn't drive long trips, maybe to next airport for vacation. My mom could drive that thing, sure. Would I? No. :)
Btw, the official presentation is supposed to be July 29, next Monday.

shop | 22 luglio 2013

They will probably sell a decent amount of these, BMW is a strong brand. It might even eat into Tesla sales a little bit for those that don't need a long distance car and can live with 70 mile range.

markapeterman | 22 luglio 2013

These things are uglier than a leaf - no idea what the draw is at that price point.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

Looking at the bright side: *if* BMW does sell plenty of those, it might trigger a (at least little) boost to finally get some serious infrastructure expansion underway; next year then maybe also MB B, then there could be some push for politicians here to get their act together.

carlk | 22 luglio 2013

It's just a Leaf that costs 10K more. Or with option a Volt that costs 20K more. It will have a small market though just for that BMW badge if nothing else.

mrspaghetti | 22 luglio 2013

@AmpedRealtor +1

Except I don't suspect a secret conspiracy against EVs, I just think they are still in denial of the coming reality.

PaceyWhitter | 22 luglio 2013

@ tobi_ger

The only problem with the i3 and infrastructure growth is that the i3 uses the frankenplug, so if that did happen, that means yet another adaptor would be needed for the MS. (and we know how fast Tesla is in prodicing those adaptors)

AmpedRealtor | 22 luglio 2013

$43,000 very quickly becomes $60,000 by the time you add a range extender, some options, doc fees, tax/lic/insurance, etc... I don't know anyone who would spend even $40,000 on a vehicle that could only be used as a commuter car. You will still need an ICE vehicle to get you from Phoenix to Sedona, or Phoenix to Flagstaff, or Phoenix to Tucson, or Phoenix to Los Angeles, or Phoenix to Palm Springs, or Phoenix to Las Vegas... so be sure to add the cost of maintaining and operating a 2nd vehicle to your overall costs. That is not necessary with a Model S 85.

PaceyWhitter | 22 luglio 2013

Not a fan of the i3, but you are wrong about the need for a second vehicle amped.

"range extender" in this context is merely a euphemism for "internal combustion engine" and it would allow for basically unlimited range (if you are willing to keep refilling the tiny gas tank)

You are also not including tax credits in the i3's price, which Tesla always includes in it's listed price.

I still don't think a buyer of a high level sport sedan would ever consider an i3, but someone who was only interested in the MS for environmental reasons may consider it.

GeirT | 22 luglio 2013

Compared to the ugly Leaf this is a wonderful little car! It will for sure be a winner in my neck of the woods, with no duties and taxes on EVs this will be a reasonably priced car.

I guess Europe will find this interesting, but agree - strange they have not had ambitions for a longer range standard. This gives Gen III a good possibility to also be a game changer in this segment. For certain Elon & Team is on the ball and they have another revolution up their sleeves.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

I read that with i3 the new CCS (franken)plug is optional to the default J1772 plug in the US.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

Slight addition: CCS is also introduced by BMW and VW in Germany; not sure which cars will have it.

PaceyWhitter | 22 luglio 2013

I wonder how that is going to work. Will it have a j1772 plug and if you get the upgrade will you get both a j1772 and a frankenplug or (more likely) just the frankenplug.

If it is just the frankenplug, will they provide a j1772 adapter?

jeffaa | 22 luglio 2013

"These companies don't get it, who is going to buy an EV with 80-100 miles of range per charge?" (Demand for Nissan LEAF Electric Car Outpacing Supply)

The Leaf is not a 'flop.'

The Leaf/i3 were not made for city to city driving, like our Tesla. Although the i3 will have a range extender option (extending the estimated range of 80-100 miles, giving an additional 100 miles).

Also, the BMW is closer to $14,000 more than the Leaf.

Neither of these cars is a Tesla Model S, quit comparing them as such.

jeffaa | 22 luglio 2013

Why aren't we happier about there being more EVs in the world?!

mrspaghetti | 22 luglio 2013

@jefaa - As a TSLA shareholder I'm ecstatic that other companies are introducing EVs that are only practical/desirable for a tiny segment of the population. Keep 'em coming :)

SamO | 22 luglio 2013


Because these hybrids are compromises. There is a demand for a long distance vehicle (Model S) and no demand for a Model S 40kwh (less than 3%).

We want other auto makers to "get" it. They need to make a longer range vehicle without gas or diesel.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

I understood it like this: the cars actually have the franken-sockets already built in so that any regular J1772 (for AC charging) can be used, just like Leafs. If one would find a CCS charging station, their franken-plug (DC fast-charging) will be working as well.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

Hmm... isn't the MS only for a tiny segment of the population? :)

eAdopter | 22 luglio 2013

As the owner of a 40 kWh Model S, here's what I think:

1. The 40 kWh Model S was discontinued too early. Unless a lack of profit was the motivation for killing the 40, TM should have waited another 12 months before making the decision. 80-100 miles of range will meet the needs of most people, most of the time, who also own an ICE. Rental cars can fill the small void that remains.

2. Who will buy an i3? Almost every friend and neighbor I know. They would also buy the TM Gen III but it's years away. Here's why the i3 will fit...
a. They love my Model S, but almost all of them think it's too expensive for their middle-class budgets.
b. I've shared with them my stories of using my MS all day and using <80 miles of range. They love the ideas of using less gas and spending less on fuel.
c. Forget charging stations for most drivers. Most people will plug in at night.
d. They admire BMW for a variety of reasons, and may already own one.
e. BMW produces interiors with superior features, quality, fit, and finish. Ditto MB.
f. There are BMW dealers in many major cities, providing a level of assurance to people on the fence.
g. BMW doesn't mislead customers with promises of financing and buyback gurantees (available only in 8-10 states).
h. BMW will sell an Extended Warranty as promised, not raise the price from $2500 to $4000 before some owners have a chance to purchase it (the situation in WA).
i. BMW will document clear and concise terms, not leave owners wondering about service and warranty terms.
j. BMW will have spare parts available when needed, not make owners wait for weeks/months after a collision.

Taken together, I think these things add up to stelar sales of the i3 in my neighborhood. I see the Nissan Leaf everywhere I go, but the low quality interior and exterior appearance are holding it back. Not so for the i3. While not stunning, it's appearance is acceptable.

(let the flames begin ;)

AmpedRealtor | 22 luglio 2013

The more EVs the better, I just don't think EVs with 100 mile range are going to get very far as a mass market vehicle. I was under the impression that the i3 "range extender" only gave you an extra 100 km of range, so a total of 150 miles. I thought it was a larger battery or something like that. I didn't know it was a gas engine - which makes the i3 even less appealing in my mind.

My point is that vehicles with such limited range are also going to be met with limited success in the marketplace. The challenge isn't to convince those of us here that the vehicle has value, the challenge will be in convincing everyone else. And those people will not be convinced with a car that can only go 100 miles on a charge. Won't happen.

The challenge is to either convince people that they don't need 300-500 miles of range like they are currently used to (good luck with that), or increase the vehicle range to a point where the concern is significantly diminished or eliminated. My daily commute is 50-60 miles, but again, I'm one of those people who isn't going to buy a vehicle just to address my commuting miles. What about those times when I want to go farther? For those occasions, I will need an ICE vehicle to complement my limited range EV if that EV will go 100 miles or less on a charge. So in my case, I find the limited range EV totally pointless without a longer range vehicle to supplant it.

tobi_ger | 22 luglio 2013

I think you got it right the first time, AR.
The i3 battery alone is good for ~130-160km (81-100miles).
Range extender, which is optional, adds another ~80 miles.

krissu | 22 luglio 2013

EAdopter, you are very right all the way. To add assurance of constant development and resale value. Comparing i3 and MS..., these are for very different customer groups. I would have chosen also 40 kW MS, I would have used max 50% of it's range daily and plug always at night. MS is very joyful to drive, what you should expect from this pricelevel, same will go for i3. MS is a nice car, ahead of the market, also with price. I find the owners of MS very innovative, but most are very blind regarding of achievements of other brands. More tolerance to other world would make this forum more like good discussion than religion!

eAdopter | 22 luglio 2013

Today, I agree with many of your points but things are rapidly changing. With the Model S, people began to see how cool and practical an EV can be, and opinions began changing. I think the i3 (and others) will increase the velocity of change.

With several options (Ford, BMW, Chevy, Nissan, MB, and thers) to choose from, consumers will observe(!) that their earlier concerns have been addressed. I think it will snowball.

As I recall, each American household has an average of about 2.2 cars. For the vast majority of households, it will soon make sense for at least one car to be an EV.

Of course, there will always be people who need the convenience of an ICE and/or can only own one car. As you said, they may need to wait for longer-range vehicles and infrastructure to become more common and affordable. Hopefully, not too long.

davidg11 | 22 luglio 2013

BMW's range extender means it turns their new EV into a GM Volt.

This isn't supposed to hit the USA market until Q2 2014.

That's about when Tesla will start cranking out the model X.

It's not even fair competition....for BMW that is.

SamO | 22 luglio 2013

One of the big drawbacks of the 40 was what Elon called it being a compromise. Not having access to the Superchargers and not having the right cell chemistry.

So he gives away the larger packs and allows you to upgrade in the future if you change your mind.

The Superchargers are the only REAL difference. With long-distance being free, instead of having range anxiety, you want to drive all the time.

sandman | 22 luglio 2013

It's an average entry into the EV market for BMW. No real risk for them trying at this level because it isn't a flagship car for them. I think it will steal Volt and Leaf sales. I can't wait for Merc/BMW to convert one of their sedans over to an EV...

Good for them and for the EV market. The more mainstream Tesla's powertrain looks, the more they will end up selling.

However, for 40-60k, I'm a bit surprised BMW didn't spend more time making it look a bit better.

shamrockceo | 22 luglio 2013

Hahahaha, who is going to buy an EV that looks like the fat mouse from Cinderella? What is the appeal of these horrendous looking vehicles? Do I just not get it? Why are Teslas virtually the only EV's that are sexy?

AmpedRealtor | 22 luglio 2013

Am I the only one who doesn't want my EV to look like an ET?

George with SacEV | 22 luglio 2013

We have a Model S, 85 standard, and we also have a Volt AND a Leaf. The Tesla is replacing our Leaf, and I am very likely to replace the 2011 Volt with the i3 when that lease expires in January of 2014.

The i3 will be faster 0-60 mph than the Volt and go much further in pure electric mode. The range extending 650cc ICE should get MUCH better mileage than the Volt's 1.4L off the shelf power. The advanced tech CFRP body shell of the i3 promises another type of engineering delta, and in California minus $10,000 in cumulative incentives makes it more reasonable.

As a second car to the Model S, what is NOT to like?

CalDreamin | 22 luglio 2013

I don't think the optional range extender ICE makes the BMW i3 like a Volt. Unlike the Volt, the i3 range extender is not intended for daily use, it's not powerful enough. It's supposed to allow the i3 to limp to the next charging station.

jandkw | 22 luglio 2013

I read many negative comments in this tread and although I agree with some of them like the i3 aesthetics is a little odd but this is BMW that build premium cars and they can find a lot of followers. The is their next generation of cars using carbon fibre structure and weights only 2700+ lbs. Although the electric motor is small compared to MS but 0-60km/h in 3.8sec and 0-100km/h in 7.2sec (from, good speed for a small 4-seater. I hope Tesla designers and engineers are hard at work looking into the i3 for the Gen III development. Is carbon fibre something they can use in Gen III? The competition is here and more will be coming in 3-4 years. I love competitions because they can push other competitors.

Both Edmunds and have good reviews on the i3 and explain what the range extender is:

rdalcanto | 22 luglio 2013

Rear wheel drive. 0-60 around 7 seconds. 100-120 mile range. BMW name and handling. I think it will do well, especially in Europe and Asia. I think Tesla just lost customers for its Gen3....

AlMc | 22 luglio 2013

This car absolutely will do well. It has the BMW name and a price point that will be more acceptable to many people than the S. Now, the question will be will it be a good enough seller to REALLY draw the ICE makers to go more heavily into hybrids and eventually into EVs in time to compete with TM long term. TM has been in EVs from the start and for the long haul. This is going to get very interesting over the next few years.

rdalcanto | 22 luglio 2013

Personally, what I don't like about the BMW from what I've seen so far, is the really small size, and space age interior. What impressed me about the Leaf is the large cabin, and large trunk in the new models. I wish the Leaf looked better and was faster. A good looking sedan a little smaller than the S, with good performance, is what we need. I hope the gen3 delivers.

Brian H | 22 luglio 2013

The GenIII has nothing to fear from the i3. The reverse is not true.

Jamon | 22 luglio 2013

Well said Brian H.

Kleist | 22 luglio 2013

Our commute is 5 miles RT - a Leaf would be a range overkill. Same for the I3 and Mercedes B class. However all these cars can not get me to SF airport and back or going to the inlaws (200 miles RT) - model S certainly can. Our Mercedes E class is now doing only the 5 miles commute ( as is the MS ) and the rest of time collecting dust. It has been completely replaced by the MS is doing now all our longer trips... more comfortable, less expensive, much more enjoyable. I expect Gen3 to have a similar functionality and therefore not comparable to all these limited range option cars - that is what Brian said.
I3 range extender is nice to get me to the SF airport and back, but would make a real long distance trip a royal pain.

Blvr888 | 23 luglio 2013

Just wondering how much these special 155/70 R19 tires would cost, if you had to replace it...

Blvr888 | 23 luglio 2013

...not the car, the tires.

bluefuego | 24 luglio 2013

I would have to agree with admjr above... though I personally have problems with BMW's chosen format in the i3, over the next few years their badge/brand should convert a decent number of drivers from pure ICE to EV or EV with range extender. In the meantime, Tesla will have been building their own brand as well as infrastructure. By the time Gen III comes out, some i3 drivers may be ready to jump to the next best thing, which hopefully will be the Tesla Gen III (I am assuming that in the next three year time period, the i3 will not undergo a major evolution in design or range as BMW will stick with a more usual and predetermined automotive product lifecycle plan).

davecolene0606 | 24 luglio 2013

"Accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles..."

it's beginning to work.

"we won't stop until they're all electric"

Get ready baby, here it's comes! :)

Brian H | 24 luglio 2013

Elon says brand is nothing but product quality that sets up positive expectations. A sub-par product degrades that.