John Voelcker of GreenCarReports writes an insightful article on the new BMW i3 being driven by California state regulations. The BMW i3 is the first car in the world to be offered with a range extender that not only alleviates the range anxiety for some drivers, but it was also designed with to meet California regulations.

By rules adopted in March 2012 by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), the 2014 BMW i3 with a REx unit qualifies as a “BEVx”, or range-extended battery-electric vehicle. It is also described as “relatively high-electric range battery-electric vehicle (BEV) to which an APU is added.”

By definition a BEVx meets some of the following criteria:


  • The vehicle must have a rated all-electric range of at least 75 miles (higher than the 50 miles required of a zero-emission vehicle);
  • The auxiliary power unit must provide range less than, or at most equal to, that battery range;
  • The APU must not be capable of switching on until the battery charge has been depleted;
  • The vehicle must meet “super ultra low emission vehicle” (SULEV) requirements; and
  • The APU and all associated fuel systems must comply with zero evaporative emissions requirements.

Here is the full article at GreenCarReports