The BMW i3 is one of the most compelling and fascinating electric cars available today. It’s a small, upright and narrow commuter car with a hip, luxury vibe. The pure electric version provides 153 miles on a single charge, which is less than competing models like the Tesla Model 3 and Chevrolet Bolt. But the i3 makes up for its modest range with great style and BMW’s impeccable quality.
In an offering that’s truly unique among EVs, the BMW i3 comes with a small, two-liter, range-extending engine and a 2.4 gallon gas tank. When the 42 kWh battery pack is nearly depleted, the engine turns on to extend the driving range to 200 miles.
The i3 uses ultra-lightweight carbon-fiber for the car’s main body structure. The combination of its lightweight structure and powerful electric motor makes the i3 a pleasure to drive. The quiet, 181-horsepower motor and small commuter hatch produce a very responsive ride maneuverable in city traffic. Not only does the i3 launch quickly from traffic lights, but it’s also easy to park in the tightest parking spots.
All told, the BMW i3 is a very capable and charismatic commuter EV.