Even though BMW recently just upped the battery capacity for its famous electric car, the BMW i3, the Bavarian brand still gets heavy criticism. Electric car fans point to other EVs, such as the Tesla Model S, Chevy Bolt and upcoming Tesla Model 3, as superior vehicles to the i3 thanks to their impressive range. Even the new BMW i3’s 114 mile range has nothing on all of the aforementioned alternatives that boast 200 mile-plus ranges. However, BMW claims that 114 miles is more than adequate and Auto Express intends to find out over the course of a year.
John Mcllroy already actually had a long-term BMW i3 prior to the new battery’s release. With that smaller, 81 mile, battery, Mcllroy was able to forgo the home charger and just charge his car at work. That was enough to get the car back home at the end of the day and then back to work the next morning. Now, with a long-term tester with a bigger battery, Mcllroy decided to actually get the home charger. Its convenience is far nicer than having to just rely on public charging stations.
With the bigger, 114 mile battery, Mcllroy is able of charging the i3 at night, at home, and is capable of getting to work and back on one charge, without borrowing Auto Express electricity. Considering that his drive is through heavily congested London traffic, that’s more than adequate and exactly what the i3 is designed to do.
But he also claims that BMW may have improved some other bits as well. While this new tester still has 19 ” wheels, it rides slightly better than the previous one Mcllroy had. It also has a relaxing and comfortable interior, with brown leather and eucalyptus wood.
So it seems that, despite the critics, the BMW i3 has been drastically improved. Those extra 33 miles seem to have really helped and have completely changed the charging time for this Auto Express writer. If that’s not a great sign of improvement, I don’t know what is.