Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $58,695 (Base price i3:$45,445)
Seating Capacity: 4
Standard Safety Features: ABS; airbags; stability control system; a tire pressure monitoring system; a rearview camera; an anti-theft alarm system; and a front and rear head protection system
Standard Features: 19-inch wheels; an all-electric vehicle; a rear wheel drive configuration; LED headlights; rear coach doors; power folding heated side mirrors; carbon fiber reinforced plastic roof; electric power steering; velour floor mats; cloth seats; manually operated front seats; and folding rear seat access
Standard Features On Range Extender: 20-inch wheels; 2.3 gallon fuel tank capacity; an electric and gas vehicle; 2-cylinders; 181-horsepower; a sport suspension; black pillar roof trim; flared wheel arches; and 109 MPGe/35 MPG combined
Optional Features On Test Vehicle: special metallic paint; giga world; a navigation system; advanced rtti; active stop and go; blue seatbelt straps; park distance control; AppleCar Play compatibility; and 6.5-inch infotainment screen
Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: AM/FM/HD/ with SiriusXM
Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes
USB connectivity: Yes
Powertrain Warranty: 4 years or 50,000 miles
Hybrid Battery Warranty: 8 years or 100,000 miles
Standard Engine/Horsepower: 2.0 /170-hp
Recommended Fuel: All-Electric
Standard Hybrid Fuel Mileage:
Current Federal Tax Break: $7,500
What’s New: Since arriving on the market four years ago, the i3 receives its most extensive update during the 2018 model year, with a number of technological enhancements, as well as exterior design changes.
Pros: The i3, with the range extender, happened to be one of the sportiest, futuristic electric vehicles we have had the keyfob (keys) too. The new optional range extender gave us the ability to increase the driving range of the vehicle by 87 miles, just using gasoline.
So, unlike other pure electric vehicles, we did not experience range anxiety nor did we feel as though we had to carefully map out our trip plans. The range extender allowed us the ability to utilize both gasoline and electricity in the i3. We were able to achieve a 200-mile driving radius, which was more than adequate for a tip across town.
However, our challenge was to avoid purely being gasoline-dependant and to make every attempt to only use the electricity. We took extreme measures, at one point, as we made a trip into the city. We avoided using the a/c and drove with the windows down on a summer day, with bearable humidity, where the vehicle gave us plenty of indicators, reminding us we needed to stay below a certain speed limit in order to maximize our electric charge. We did our darndest to hyper mileage and avoid, using the reserved gasoline.
Also while the boxy compact, with the funky design, was available in a variety of trims, we reviewed a two tone i3, which spewed out an eye-opening 184-horsepower from its 2-cylinder engine.
BMW’s roomy compact, which included suicide rear doors and optional blue seat belts, which is the color used to stress we’re in a hybrid, was outfitted with beefy looking 20-inch wheels. The larger wheels complimented both the drive and the performance, which was accentuated by this model year new sports suspension. The suspension included springs, dampers and anti-roll bars designed specifically for performance oriented i3.
Moreover, the interior of the i3 matched the out of the box exterior design. The interior layout seems to give us a glimpse into the future of self-driving vehicles. The design was a mixture of using two iPad like screens to serve in the place of both the infotainment screen and the instrument gauge, slender designed seats that seem as though were taken from flying cars to Bamboo wood materials carefully place throughout the cabin. The roomy interior represented all of the possibilities of what could be achieve by an interior designer with both an unlimited imagination and checkbook.
Lastly, for buyers seeking such technological and safety driving aids as a radar activated cruise control system, a frontal collision warning system with City Collision mitigation and AppleCarPlay, its available in a package.
Cons: Our one complaint is that there was no sunroof. We realize this is an electric vehicle and features such as that not only add to the weight of the vehicle, but reduces MPGe.
And for those seeking loads of storage in the cargo area, they’ll have to pass up on the i3. We found it to be more than adequate for trips to the grocery store without occupants in the rear. We could easily load up the back seat.
Verdict: For buyers in the market to lease, since we don’t recommending buying an electric vehicle, due to technology rapidly evolving, the i3 is worth considering. It’s available in a variety of trims. It’s a standout on the road and the vehicle does not lose the flavor, as it relates to the performance, that makes it a BMW. The i3 handles well, has a roomy interior coupled with the latest tech features that will make anyone adore this high tech rolling piece of art.