We’re fans of the BMW i3, here at BMWBLOG. And it’s not just because it wears a roundel and we’re called BMWBLOG. We like the BMW i3 simply because it’s one of the most enjoyable cars in the world to drive. It’s funky, weird and different and nothing else on the road drives like it. It has far more character than an EV has the right to and it is actually fun to drive, cross my heart. But don’t just take our word for it. Automobile Magazine just recently listed four things that are cool about the i3. All four of these things are prime reasons why we like Bavaria’s little electric hatchback so much.
The first thing they list is the cabin. If you’ve ever sat inside a BMW i3, you’d know why. It’s completely unique in the auto industry and there’s something just lovely about it. The way that the dash swoops underneath the seemingly floating iDrive screen and is covered in eucalyptus wood is just so eye-catching. There’s also the spindly steering wheel with its strange “gear” selector. Then there’s the seats and the materials inside the cabin. All of which are made from recycled materials and both look and feel like nothing else. It’s just very unique and very interesting inside.
Next, Automobile lists the BMW i3’s acceleration. With only 170 hp from its rear-mounted electric motor, you might think the i3 is slow. But it isn’t. Being that it only weighs around 3,000 lbs and makes all of its torque at zero rpm, it cooks when you put the throttle down. There’s more than enough shove to make the i3 genuinely quick from 0-30 mph. That means it accelerates like a proper BMW and not just like an electric car. Plus, it makes a funny “wheeeeeee” sound as it does it. See, character.
Third is its charging capabilities. While this isn’t really all that fancy or interesting, it’s nice to know that you can charge the i3 up on just a 110v house outlet. BMW gives you what it calls an “Occasional Use Charger”. This is for when you take a long trip to a friend’s house who doesn’t have a fast-charger installed, you can just plug it in overnight and have a fresh battery in the morning. Seems trivial but it really is a nice feature.
Lastly, Automobile likes its Range Extender. Another commonplace among the auto industry but, again, it’s nice to have. With electric vehicles comes range anxiety, which makes many people very nervous. The Range Extender (REx for short) eliminates that by putting a small gasoline powered engine underneath the trunk floor which can kick on to recharge the battery, though it never applies power to the wheels. What’s good about this is that the BMW i3 REx is still technically an EV, so it gets all of the same incentives as an EV but can use a gasoline generator, basically, to help it get further than what just its electric range will allow. Get stuck in more traffic than you anticipated on a hot day and now you can’t make it home on EV power along? No worry, just drive with the REx on and fill up on gas at the next station.[Source: Automobile Mag]