The BMW i3, the German automaker’s first all-electric vehicle, is finally here. The company held launch events in New York, London and Beijing today, ahead of the November availability in Gemany and throughout Europe. Customers in the U.S., China, Japan and elsewhere will have to wait until the first half of 2014.
The i3 features a carbon-fiber passenger cell and an aluminum chassis and, at curb weight of 1,195 kg, is lighter than most vehicles in the compact class. The car’s electric drive-train generates 170 hp and peak torque of 250 Nm. The 0 to 60 km/h run is timed at 3.7 seconds while the 0 to 100 km/h sprint takes 7.2 seconds. The i3’s maximum speed is 150 km/h.
The i3 has a respectable range of 130 to 160 km on a fully charged battery. With a range-extender, which maintains the charge of the lithium-ion battery using a two-cylinder gasoline engine with 34 hp (25 kW), the car’s maximum range is boosted to 300 km.
“(The i3) is purpose-built around an electric power train to serve the needs of our megacity customers,” said Norbet Reithofer, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG.
The base price for the BMW i3 in Germany is 34,950 Euro while a Range Extender-equipped version will run 39,450 Euros. More than 90,000 people have expressed interest in a test-drive, according to the company.
Photo Credit: BMW