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BMW i3. REx or No?

  • I have an i3 with REx

    Votes: 130 28.2%
  • I have an i3 without REx

    Votes: 54 11.7%
  • If I had an i3 I'd probably get REx

    Votes: 181 39.3%
  • If I had an i3 I'd probably go without REx

    Votes: 96 20.8%
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Discussion Starter #1
Simple survey with a few options, just to gauge how these two versions are going. BMW i3 owners and owners to be, please vote, and perhaps share your reasoning below too. :)

I've currently voted "if I had one, it'd be with REx", and that's really just because with one pure BEV I think I'd appreciate the range on the REx over the LEAF and the extra trips/options that could open up.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I would go pure BEV I just like the idea of having no fuel or engine to lug around. I'm just not big fan of hybrids
I know what you mean with regards wanting pure BEV, but then again I'm thinking I'd have the LEAF and my wife the i3, so it'd be good to mix it up, or vice versa. Good to mix things up.
 

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i3 with Range Extender (EREV) Sept 2014
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REX on order, I test drove car and wanted one, but need to be able to cover longer journeys without notice and without fuss. So compromise is with current technology means I need REX.
 

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i3 with Range Extender (EREV) Sept 2014
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If (like us) you're looking for an EV that can drive beyond the range of the battery then I'd suggest the REX as an 'affordable' and practical solution for the next 3 to 5 years. After that affordable battery range and (probably) expensive infrastructure will give you different options :)
Exactly don't want to wait that long so for my part looking to enjoy REX until such time can go full electric with next car hopefully MK 2 version or other.
 

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Simple survey with a few options, just to gauge how these two versions are going. BMW i3 owners and owners to be, please vote, and perhaps share your reasoning below too. :)

I've currently voted "if I had one, it'd be with REx", and that's really just because with one pure BEV I think I'd appreciate the range on the REx over the LEAF and the extra trips/options that could open up.
I have an i3 Rex, in 2000 miles I have used it once to test it out, but I would no be without it.

By the way I only knew it was running because the range went up. At 60 mph on the m5, my 3 passengers did not hear it till I told them it was running.
 

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The short answer is REx. Along with my 'reasoning' I thought I'd also try explain why I think the REx works so well so I'm afraid it's a bit of a long post....

When I was making this decision last summer I originally wanted the BEV. It's 120kg lighter, £3k cheaper and technically the purer solution with the feel good factor of never having to visit a petrol pump. However, my driving regularly takes me well outside of BEV range so seeing as this was my first EV I started reading the LEAF forum to see how people coped with long distance trips. It wasn't a pretty sight and I knew for sure that I didn't want the hassle of public charging. I know there are a lot of BEV owners who do big mileage but I don't enjoy that kind of challenge. I don't even want to wait 30 mins in a service station car park, certainly not when with family or friends. Sorry, that's just me, lazy I know :rolleyes:

I wasn't keen on the inefficiencies of buying a 2nd ICE car for the longer journeys so that option was ruled out. The decision actually came down to ICE or REx but the more I thought about it the more I really wanted an EV so REx it was.

Now that I'm 3 months in I thought I'd explain a few examples of how I've come to appreciate the REx

1. My daily commute leaves me returning to my house with only 20 miles or so of range remaining. I charge it overnight on the cheap tariff but that means the car sits all evening with a low SoC before charging starts at midnight so if anything unexpected comes up and I need to drive somewhere the REx allows me to do this. I'm not sure I'd be comfortable if I owned the BEV in this situation, I'd probably be wanting to plug it in as soon as I got in from work which would mean more expensive charging (15p per kWh rather than 4p).

2. One Saturday I went shopping where the car park had 32A chargers but I'd never been before so didn't know if I'd have the right card. I deliberately didn't bother charging the night before so I arrived with 8 miles range left, my card worked and I departed later with a fully charged battery. That's not something I'd have risked doing with the BEV. A minor perk but a nice one :)

3. My car has twice failed to charge overnight. I'm a contractor who gets paid by the hour so the REx saved me ££ here by allowing me to just get in and drive to work rather than having to wait 2 hours for the car to charge.

4. Long distance motorway trips have seen the car giving approximately 160 miles in total range (battery + REx) and each refuel gives another 90 miles which works out about 45 mpg when running the REx. My 200 mile trip to my parents just needs 1 stop for 5 mins to refuel and the total journey time is only a few more minutes than my previous ICE car. A BEV would be 2 stops and at least an hour extra.

Oh, and one last thing, maintenance : I've read comments suggesting increased maintenance and servicing costs for the REx. Actually, it's not a big deal and that's because of how little the REx is used. Less than 10% of my mileage is done with the REx so that's going to be around 1250 miles a year i.e. much less than an ICE car that typically needs oil/filters changed every 12 months. The first service on my i3 is not for 2 years and I bought a 5 year service plan for £375 so you can see that REx maintenance costs aren't really significant. For reference, the i3 BEV service plan is £325 so the REx effectively works out costing an extra £10 per year.

I know there will be BEV owners reading all that and thinking 'meh' but, like I've said before, the REx was needed to convince me to buy an EV. I'll probably purchase a BEV in future when ranges increase but in the meantime the REx has made it all very easy allowing hassle free long journeys and a peace of mind knowing that if anything unexpected crops up I can just get in and drive 'like a normal car'.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The short answer is REx. Along with my 'reasoning' I thought I'd also try explain why I think the REx works so well so I'm afraid it's a bit of a long post....
Define "bit". ;) :D

Nice post and I think it's the way may current EV-converts (and converts to be) are thinking.
 

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I have a rex. I almost never use it. But the consequences of running out of charge are so inconvenient that it is worth it for those rare moments. EG when a charger has failed / I have forgotten my cable (!) / I need to make an unexpected trip. Having a rex means I never need to use an ICE - ultimately it means I travel more electric miles than if I had the Bev.

And it's nice never having to worry about efficiency - driving style, heater comfort etc. I'll never need to turn off my heater on a cold day in order to complete my journey!

And I never need rely on the UK's charging infrastructure, which sounds fragmented, temperamental and patchy according to posts on this site.
 

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... I'd probably be wanting to plug it in as soon as I got in from work which would mean more expensive charging (15p per kWh rather than 4p).
I'm intrigued by the 4p comment. Where in the UK / which supplier provides this ?!?
 

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Thanks for link.

I read through it and see that you have a BritGas 'energysmart' tariff with an incredibly low 4.3p/kwh night rate. But when I look though any of the energy comparison sites, the lowest I can find from any supplier is around 5.8p, with most around the 7p / kwh rate. So I am confused as to how you got such a good deal.

Do you live in a particularly beneficial region? .. do you have a dual-fuel account ? Any advice would be most welcome!

I'm curious because I'm about to quit Eon due to their 'customer care' dept being a prime example of an oxymoron. I've had a series of massively incorrect bills based on estimates that drain my bank account through direct debit. The subsequent reading corrections and arguments as to how to get a large refund are laughable.


FOLLOW UP - as far as I can tell the 4p / Kwh night rate is only achievable if you have a dual fuel account to start with, and unfortunately I don't. Besides I'm attempting to go 95% off grid so it wont matter in the long run. Unless I store bulk night time leccy and use it during the day ;)
 
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