2015 BMW i3 offers a Range Extender for $3,850

Article by Christian A., on October 11, 2013

2015 BMW i3 electric vehicle, when powered by the optional range extender engine, costs $46,125 (including destination costs). This means that it’s priced $3850 extra over the model’s base price. The gasoline engine is meant to complement the electric-only i3’s range of about 80-100 miles. The gasoline engine -- a 650cc two-cylinder engine – delivers 34 horsepower.

The wheels are not powered by this engine. Rather, it operates as a generator for the battery pack, which charges the 170 hp electric motor. The i3 is rear-wheel-drive in both electric-only and range extender configurations and the electric motor and the gasoline range extender are mounted in the rear. The range extender model is heavier than the electric-only version by about 330 lbs.

The optional range extender engine is partnered with a 2.4-gallon fuel tank. BMW states that the extender roughly doubles the range of the i3, which will place its total range at about 200 miles. However, it’s not yet known what the i3’s fuel economy is when the gasoline engine is running.

We also don’t know what the official EPA ratings are for mpg-e and estimated range. Charging the i3’s battery with a 220-volt charging port can be done within three hours. The 2015 BMW i3 will go on sale in the U.S. during the second quarter of 2014. It will be available in three trim levels, which BMW refers to as the Mega, Giga, and Tera worlds.

The design of the BMW i3’s front section is characterized by a number of features with the first being the strong curved apron. There is also the rather unique interpretation of the kidney grille, showing it as an enclosed element. The headlights meanwhile have the LED U-shaped light units on its edges. Its rear section also has the LED U-shaped light and has been incorporated to the fully glazed and large tailgate as “floating” elements.

There are two main reasons why BMW was able to implement a rather exceptional degree of freedom when it comes to designing the new i3. These are the BMW eDrive drive technology and what is known as the LifeDrive architecture. There is no question that the look of the new i3 is truly unforgettable, much like the driving experience and the feeling of space inside. Overall length is 3,999 mm, with total width at 1,775 mm, and a height of 1,578 mm.

These figures give the i3 unique proportion wherein the agility in urban use is highlighted by the compactness and dynamism. By having short overhangs, this new model is able to put attention on the nimble driving qualities it offers.

Finally the large glass surface allows the i3 to have that fascinating lightness and when paired with the visible carbon structures, give a hint as to the low-weight design. In creating the passenger compartment, BMW utilized CFRP, a material that is light but at the same time truly rigid. This allowed the brand to avoid using B-pillars ensuring that getting to the two rows of seats is indeed easy.

The i3 also has many of the well-known trademarks that the brand’s i models have long featured. One is the “black belt,” which is a feature that begins from the bonnet before going above the roof and extending the vehicle’s rear section.

There is also the “stream flow” sweep of the car’s side contours, another result of the stand-alone i design language of the brand. These features allowed BMW to make use of large side window surfaces especially at the rear. As such, it augments that already generous fell of space on the interior.

Press Release

BMW i3 Pricing Announced

Woodcliff Lake, NJ – 3:00 am EDT/12:00 am PDT July 22, 2013… BMW today announced pricing for the ground-breaking BMW i3 electric vehicle. The Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (without Destination & Handling) in the US will be $41,350, before any federal or state incentives. The Destination & Handling fee in the US is currently $925.

“The BMW i3 heralds the dawn of a new era for individual mobility and for the BMW Group. True to a genuine BMW, the BMW i3 has strong emotional appeal, outstanding product substance and a guarantee of sheer driving pleasure,” said Ian Robertson, Member of the Board of Management, Sales and Marketing BMW. “With this leading-edge vehicle and attractive price, we will provide customers with a compelling offer for electromobility.”

The BMW i3’s 170 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque hybrid-synchronous electric motor, developed and produced by BMW, is electrified by a 22-kWh lithium-ion battery, good for 80-100 miles of emission-free driving. Designed from the ground up to be an electric car, the BMW i3 uses the Industry’s first mass produced carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) passenger cell mounted on an aluminum chassis.

The BMW i3 will offer interior space comparable to the legendary BMW 3 Series on a shorter overall body. Its 32.3-foot turning circle and a relatively long wheelbase make it agile and engaging to drive, yet ideally suited to driving in dense urban areas.

Quick and convenient charging is possible either with the home charging station supplied by BMW i or at any public charging station that uses a Level 2 SAE J1772 charging system. DC fast charging, using the SAE DC Combo-Fast Charger, will be available as an option. From a public fast-charging station, it will provide an 80 percent charge from a fully depleted battery in just 20 minutes.

BMW i’s commitment to sustainable urban mobility encompasses the i3 production facilities, where hydro-electric, wind and solar power are used to power the CFRP production facilities in Moses Lake, Washington and the Leipzig, Germany assembly line. Sustainable materials are also used for the BMW i3 interior upholstery and trim.

The BMW i3 will make its world debut at three simultaneous events in New York, London and Beijing on Monday, July 29. It will arrive in US showrooms in the second quarter of 2014.

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Topics: bmw, bmw i3, hybrid

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