BMW just announced a new entry-level electric car – the BMW i4 eDrive35. The new i4 35 will join the U.S. lineup in first quarter of 2023. Therefore, customers will have three choices when it comes to the electric gran coupe: i4 35, i4 40 and i4 M50. In this article, we will take a look specifically at the non-M version of the i4 and determine which one is the better buy.
Power and Performance
The new BMW i4 35 uses a single electrically-excited synchronous motor delivering 281 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque sent to the rear wheels. BMW estimates a 0 to 60 mph time of just 5.8 seconds. On the other hand, the BMW i4 40 also uses a single electrically-excited synchronous motor delivering 335 horsepower and 317 lb-ft of torque. 0 to 60 mph time is a bit quicker than the i4 35 model – 5.5 seconds.
Range, Battery Capacity and Charging Times
The BMW i4 35 is powered by high-voltage batteries with an energy content of 70.2 kWh gross and 66 kWh net. When fitted with the standard 18-inch aero wheels, the i4 eDrive35 is expected to deliver an EPA range of about 260 miles (estimated range of up to 260 miles according to preliminary BMW AG tests based on the EPA’s test procedure standards). Utilizing DC fast charging, the batteries can be charged at a rate of up to 180 kW and, based on early testing, owners can expect to be able to charge the HV battery from 10% to 80% in only 32 minutes.
When it comes to the BMW i4 40, the high-voltage batteries have an energy content of 83.9 kWh gross and 81.5 kWh net. This allows the BMW i4 eDrive40 to deliver an EPA range of 301 miles when equipped with 18-inch wheels and 282 miles when equipped with 19-inch wheels. The i4 40 is capable of 200 kW charging capacity. 10 to 80 percent charging is achieved in 31 minutes.
As expected, the BMW i4 35 is the cheapest option in the i4 family. It has a starting base price of $51,400 plus $995 destination and handling. In comparison, the BMW i4 40 is priced at $55,400, plus $995 destination and handling.
Which One To Buy?
As you’d expect, the choice between the BMW i4 35 and i4 40 comes down to your daily driving habits. There is a gap of 40 miles of range between the two models and $4,000. If you have a charging station at home or if you can often charge at a DC Fast Charging station, then the range difference becomes irrelevant. But if you’re always driving up to the range limit every day, and if the charging infrastructure around is less than adequate, then the additional 40 miles in the i4 40 might come in handy.
In our case, with a charging station at home and access to fast charging nearby, the choice is simple: BMW i4 35 to save $4,000.