Before I even begin talking about BMW and their all new electric cars, I’d want to put this out – I’m a big fan of BMW. Although I don’t own any of their cars (well, I can’t afford it), I’ve been a passenger in many BMWs and driven one 5-series BMW car till date.
I was delighted when I heard BMW’s new entry of electric cars, the philosophy of which they referred to as “sustainable mobility.” This entire vision encapsulates their idea of new and visionary electric vehicles, inspiring design (oh I love their design), and a new understanding of “premium” strongly defined by sustainability. I’d love to talk about this, but first, here’s a video review of the BMW i3 from Marek Drives.
BMW i3 Review
Now, that video is satisfying. Marek sounded neutral and appreciates the car’s brilliance and performance – an honest perspective.
The BMW i3’s Electric Motor provides 125 kW/170 hp with a torque of 250 Nm. Since electric motors have full torque immediately available to them, there is a bigger launch or overtaking advantage over combustion engines where torque needs to be built up. BMW also claims that the i3 accelerates from 0-60 kmph in under 4 seconds and 0-100 kmph in about 7.2. I’ve watched about 3-4 reviews of the i3 on YouTube and I found that their values were negligibly close.
The BMW i3 houses a 22 kWh Lithium-Ion high-voltage battery powering a 25kW 647cc generator. The battery can be charged from a conventional socket and AC fast charging takes less than 3 hours with the use of the BMW i Wallbox Pure when charging from 0-80%. There’s also a super-fast DC charging option available for public DC charging stations and takes less than 30 minutes to charge from 0-80%.
BMW is manufacturing carbon strands that form the basis of the i3’s carbon-fiber reinforced plastic bodywork at a new US$100 million plant built in Moses Lake, Washington, using raw material shipped from Japan. This location was selected to take advantage of the abundant hydroelectric power available in this U.S. region because carbon-fiber production requires considerable energy and would otherwise emit much carbon dioxide. Electricity in this region also costs about one-seventh of what it costs in Germany, providing a financially beneficial reason for the Moses Lake location. The carbon fiber is then shipped to Landshut, Germany, where the carbon-fiber reinforced plastic parts are fabricated, and the vehicle assembly line is located in Leipzig.
With the i Series, BMW brings two entrants – the i3 and the i8. The i3 is a fully-electric city car while the i8 is an electric-hybrid sports car.
BMW’s new “i” brand adds a host of new services to all the electric or electric-hybrid cars they’ll be manufacturing under this brand. Carbon Fibre, LifeDrive Architecture, BMW eDrive, BMW EfficientDynamics and their new Design Philosophy. Get insights into each of these services on their official page here.
The BMW i8 at the Frankfurt Motor Show