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Discussion Starter #1
I quote - "BMW AG aims to sell at least 30,000 units of its i3 electric vehicle a year beginning in 2014."

If they are aiming to shift that volume they will need to be aggressive on pricing - so I'm going to guess the cheapest EV model will be £24999 after UK subsidy. That assume the battery is purchased - or will they go down the battery lease route?

Would people really spend that much for a BMW compared to the Zoe as I don't think the i3 is that much bigger?

One rumour is that you will be able to swap your i3 for another BMW if you need to do longer journeys. A strange model of range-extending...

Any other ideas, guesses, rumours, suggestions? Anyone planning to trade their Leaf in for an i3?
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Just found this quote - "BMW sources said the i3 will be above 40,000 euros in Europe"

Are they blowing smoke to keep people guessing? That would make it way more than a Leaf which has similar range. How much is a BMW "i" badge worth?
 

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It is going to be very pricey I believe... it is a BMW after all so they are not going to produce anything cheap or even middle of the road on price.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If that's the case how to they expect to sell 30K unit a year? How many do Nissan sell worldwide in a year?
 

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So the range extender model is £28,830 otr

http://www.leaftalk.co.uk/showthread.ph ... n-The-Road


Quicker than an Ampera, faster 32A charging, DC rapid charge, much longer EV range, nicer interior (IMHO), smartphone app and probably better to drive due to being 500kg lighter. Not to mention a BMW badge.

I think this is an Ampera killer. I wonder what it will do to our second hand prices?
 

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David, you might well be right and the BMW i3 might kill off the Ampera... however, am I alone when I say that it is one of the most ugly cars I have ever seen?

I wouldn't have one.
 

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It's a totally different beast (and yes Paul I agree with your comment on looks). It's only the size of a Fiesta and their optimistic estimate of maximum extended EV range is only 180 miles. I'm sure your right David that some people will buy it in preference to the Ampera mainly because of the badge, and yes the Vauxhall is not exactly excelling at the sales game but as to being killed off by the i3........?!

Clive
 

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BMW say the car has the interior space of a 3 series in the footprint of a 1 series - which is the opposite way around to an Ampera I would suggest...

http://insideevs.com/bmw-releases-all-t ... on-the-i3/

Personally, I think the car will be ok to look at without the two tone colour scheme we have seen. I will reserve final judgement until tomorrow when I see it in the metal.


As for the 180 mile extended range: That would actually cover every single journey I have done bar one with the Ampera. I could live with the rare need to fill up twice on a journey for the trade off of barely ever going beyond EV range, especially if a good DC rapid charge network develops.
 

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Yes, I'd like to see it in the metal before passing final judgement on the looks. I can't see it having 3 series space myself from the pics. Sounds like PR hype to me.

Has anyone ever tested out the claimed 80-100 mile "real world" range?
 

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Well, it has a small bonnet and is very cab forward. Pictures from the unveiling show a very large boot too.

From LT: Standard on the UK i3.

19" Style 427 wheels
Standard interior world with Grey/Black cloth
Grained metallic finish instrument panel
Bluetooth and USB Audio Interface.
BMW ConnectedDrive:
BMW Apps interface
BMW Emergency Call
BMW Online Services
BMW TeleServices
Remote Services
BMW Navigation Services - Business
BMW Professional radio
DAB Digital Radio
Heat protection green tinted glazing
LED daytime running lights
Multi-Function leather steering wheel - Black with blue accent
Park Distance Control - rear
Rain sensor with automatic wiper and headlights
Rear Spoiler
Remote Control
 

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dpeilow said:
I think this is an Ampera killer.
I think there are still a few questions:

The range extender is really low power so can it drive at 70 on the motorway? or is Range extender mode limited ability?
Its a lightweight carbon fibre box, so what is the ride quality like? (greater % unsprung weight)
It appears to have skinny wheels, which would be great on efficiency but not so great handling & braking
It doesn't look quite like a normal car.. a bit of an ecobox.

I do like the 100 mile range. I do like 0-60 in 8. I do like that it has fast charger. I do like that it has interconnectivity. I do like the price. I do like that its another manufacturer.

but I don't think its a 'killer' yet. It is an alternative RE-EV, it is a cheaper ER-EV, so it will take a share from the volt& Amp. but its not quite a 'normal' car so I don't think it'll take it all... should help bring V&A prices down a bit though...
 

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To me the i3 looks very much a town car. I don't even see it as a direct competitor for the Ampera in that the Ampera is very much suitable for long distance trips. The i3 doesn't seem like it is designed for that market and I don't think it is in the same sector as the Ampera in that respect. Even its range extender is short on range requiring more fuelling stops on long trips.

It might be cheaper than the Ampera but for a town car... it is still very expensive! I see it more of a direct competitor to the ZOE tbh.
 

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So having sat in it, I quite like the car in the metal. The design looks better in 3D and the cabin is high quality and roomy. There is plenty of rear legroom with the front seats set for my height (6'1"). The boot is slightly less deep than the Ampera but isn't impinged on by a sloping window.

I'm slightly less convinced by BMW's story about how they will ensure there are sufficient CCS standard rapid chargers, given how long it's taken to get Nissan's CHAdeMO chargers in enough places. What appetite will service station owners have for another charging point? I would stick with the REx version for the time being and treat any CCS chargers you find as a bonus.

I'll reserve final judgement until driving one, but I did drive the ActiveE yesterday and was very impressed. For a prototype it is extremely well built and it is plenty of fun to drive. It bodes well.
 

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dpeilow said:
In answer to the earlier question - yes it can drive at highway speed (70+) on the REx.
That sounds good, I guess the caveat is that you can drive at highway speeds when the battery is depleted? rather than setting RE Mode before starting and using 50/50...Are there any more details on the spec of the RE engine? are they still going with a tiddler or have they embiggened it?

I don't mean to sound like I'm having a downer on the car, I just want it confirmed that they are doing it right, sometimes the marketing speak deliberately hides the truth of the matter.
 

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650cc, 34hp engine. Comes on when battery reaches 20% but can be cancelled if you are nearly at your destination.

20% means you have 4kWh in reserve. In order to deplete it, it would have to be a very long hill if the engine is contributing 25kW and the car is drawing 5 to 10 kW from the battery.
 

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It is only an opinion but based on my experience with the Leaf, where I can see on a dial how much power the car is using at any moment, it sounds to me like there is doubt in my mind as to whether the RE can sustain motorway speeds. I am sure it can for short periods where RE is being supplement by battery but at 70mph on the flat it won't have a lot spare to recharge the battery will it?

One of the reasons I was happy getting the Ampera was that there was sufficient "uumph" in the generator to sustain decent performance on the motorway which is when range-extended EVs really come into their own IMO.

The i3 to me is a town car and so for me the RE isn't really the best tech for that car. To me it is a great full EV option but I am yet to be convinced that the RE makes sense on that car.

What we need now is some i3 owners to come on here and tell me, and everyone else for that matter, how wrong we are! I would love to be proven wrong and that it turns out to be a great EV and a great ER-EV. I am sure we'd all love to hear from i3 owners on their experiences.
 

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dpeilow said:
650cc, 34hp engine. Comes on when battery reaches 20% but can be cancelled if you are nearly at your destination.
OK maybe I don't get it, why does the Ampera need a 74bhp 1.4 Litre engine? - So it can sustain motorway mph on a flat battery.
(based on drag coefficient, not weight & hills, since the i3 is a bit bigger [cross section area] than the Amp I suspect its drag coefficient is higher too.)

Ergo I think BMW are hiding something. You can't sustain a drive at 70mph on 34hp. They must be using battery and Engine to sustain motorway speeds.

So that means it's not a 'top up and go again' range extender. The quoted range of the RE version is just that, 'Battery limited extended range'.

Hence it would not be able to do the 400 mile motorway drive I did on Wednesday in my Ampera, without stopping to recharge the battery or driving very slowly, below 34hp average.
 

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Sorry, you're both wrong. I would suggest that GM used the 1.4 because it was the cheapest thing they had in the parts bin. The Ampera could easily use a smaller engine with a higher specific output, but given the Ampera's small battery and buffer compared to the i3, perhaps not one as small as i3's engine.


A range extender just has to provide average power requirements and a battery buffer big enough for hill climbing and acceleration. Regen and excess engine capacity on downhills replenishes that buffer.


I don't have data from the Ampera or Leaf, but Tesla publishes consumption graphs.





Now Watt hour/mile * mile/hour = Watts so we can easily calculate power for a given speed.


The Model S uses 340 Wh/mile at 70 mph therefore:

340 * 70 = 23800 Watts = 23.8 kW or 31.9 hp


The Roadster uses 300 Wh/mile at 70 mph therefore:

300 * 70 = 21000 Watts = 21 kW or 28.2 hp


So even the large Model S could be powered by BMW's 650cc engine. It could propel the car at 73 mph.



Incidentally, my experience with driving Roadsters (which have a power guage where the rev counter would normally be) says these published graphs are accurate.


I would expect the i3 to sit somewhere between these two cars.


What would cause you to have to slow down is a sustained headwind. You get this effect in an EV anyway, or you find your range comes up short. Here you'd get the same but be eating into the buffer instead.

Let's say you had a hill or headwind that pushed consumption up to 30 kW. That's about the worst I've seen in the Roadster on short, sharp climbs.

The engine is supplying 25 kW so 5 kW comes from the buffer. That has 4 kWh so it can supply 5 kW for 48 minutes, or 56 miles at a constant 70 mph. That's an impossibly long hill and unlikely for constant uninterupted wind too.


I think BMW have done a pretty good optimisation job in sizing and packaging this. Interestingly, this engine produces 60 hp in motorbike form, so it is very detuned here.
 
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