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Model 3 vs BMW i3

Discussion in 'Model 3' started by Hitman007, Jan 21, 2018.

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  1. Hitman007

    Hitman007 Member

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    I had the opportunity to drive a friends Model 3 a few weeks ago and was impressed. Nice car with plenty of power. As others have said the software is not as robust as my Model X had but its the early stages. So today I test drove a BMW i3 for comparison. There is none. The i3 is a joke. I can;t believe BMW put their name on that car. Yugo would be more appropriate. Seats are very uncomfortable, handling is terrible with those tiny clown car tires and the instrument panel is sparse. At 65 miles an hour with a cross wind on the freeway it's a white knuckle experience. And with a range of 100 miles average and a price of $50k it is no competition for the Model 3. I assume it will die a natural death. It will be known in BMW history as a terrible attempt at electric.
     
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  2. jimmyjohn

    jimmyjohn Member

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    Ditto i8
     
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  3. WileyTheMan

    WileyTheMan Peanut Gallery Member

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    The i3 is a compliance car, plain and simple. It's meant to die on the vine until the market requires BMW to make compelling EVs, like what's starting to happen.
     
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  4. Snerruc

    Snerruc Member

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    I read that all i3s have been recalled on safety.
     
  5. wpnelson

    wpnelson Member

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    I had an i3 for a 24 month lease before I got my S, now on to M3. The M3 is overall a better car, there's no doubt, but you're not giving the i3 its due. It was a good car, especially as a city car, with some tech (including carbon fiber frame) that is way beyond the M3. Fun to drive, much better visibility out front and back, better overall interior materials quality.
     
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  6. smac

    smac Active Member

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    If it's a compliance car why do they sell it worldwide? (Where in Europe it handily outsells the Model S).

    The Electric Focus or Fiat 500e now they are compliance cars, sold only in the most BEV friendly countries. Even the Leaf is based on another car's underpinings.

    The i3 and the Tesla's are still the only ground up BEV designs. So to call it a compliance car is really doing it a disservice.

    The i3 was a car of it's time . One that could be brought to market 4 years ago given the then cost of batteries, at a price consumers would pay, without making BMW a loss. In fulfilling that brief it did a fair job. (And did a lot of investing in sustainable tech along the way).

    Now sure for the US market the i3 was actually made worse due to "compliance" issues, but that's CARB's fault not BMW's.

    Will the Model 3, be a better car, for sure it's a 4 year newer design, and the global market for batteries is vastly different now. Will BMW be forced to respond and bring a more compelling offering to market, very possibly.

    Consumer choice is good in my book, so more the merrier. To give credit where it's due BMW are probably one of the more forward looking of the legacy automakers.
     
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  7. MP3Mike

    MP3Mike Well-Known Member

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    So they can claim it isn't a compliance car. ;) (Like the Chevy Bolt.)
     
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  8. smac

    smac Active Member

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    The Bolt is no longer sold worldwide, since GM sold Opel ;)

    It wasn't even ever sold in RHD countries.

    I've seen i3's on the road in the US, Europe (including RHD UK) and even China. The only other cars that is true for is the Leaf and Tesla S/X.

    Where do you draw the line about what is compliance?
     
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  9. novox77

    novox77 1.21 Gigawatts

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    I suspect that a fleet of Model 3s will get more use by the LAPD than their fleet of i3s.
    LAPD is apparently barely using its large fleet of BMW i3 electric vehicles

    I wouldn't say the i3 is inferior to the Model 3 because it was conceived 4 years earlier. There's a reason 400k people paid $1000 to reserve a Model 3. Tesla didn't settle and created a compelling product. They are going all in with EVs. This is why Tesla has not been profitable all these years. They are spending on more infrastructure and R&D to demonstrate the EV's potential so ALL auto companies transition to EVs. The seekingalphas can't wrap their heads around the fact that Tesla's corporate mission is not capitalistic in nature.

    Germany is really worried they are losing their reputation as elite auto designers. For sure BMW is forced to respond (iNext).
     
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  10. Maximilien

    Maximilien Member

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    Seriously, for its price, i8 is very ridiculous. I remember when the press was praising it was Tesla killer and this is not even close math even against non performance models. Their most recent range upgrade of 10 more miles after years of release is laughable at best.
     
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  11. smac

    smac Active Member

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    @maximizese The i8 was never intended to be a Tesla killer. It only got dragged into the whole comparison by lazy journo's that saw it had an EV drivetrain and put 2+2 together and came up with 5.

    It's more a 911 rival, just one that is a [email protected] load better for the planet.

    Yes you can look at the 0-60 specs and say "meh", but it's quiet and refined on long trips (I'd say better than my 2014 Model S was), the material quality is undeniably higher, the handling is more sorted, and again back at the time of launch (and to an extent even today), it leveraged the fact it could be driven anywhere due to gas stations.

    Putting this into perspective when the i8 launched there were only 3 Supercharger sites in the whole of the UK, using a Model S was completely out of the question as a single car replacement for all but the most dedicated EV enthusiast.

    Times change.

    Right now if you were in the market for a 2+2 sports car, not a sedan, the i8 is probably still one of the better environmental choices.

    I suspect the real reason BMW brought it to market, was not to challenge Tesla or Porsche anyway. It was a rolling test bed for their "through the road" hybrid system, which has subsequently trickled down into the much more affordable stuff like the Mini PHEV, and 225xe.
     
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  12. SageBrush

    SageBrush 2018: Drain the Sewer

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    #12 SageBrush, Jan 22, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2018
    i3 BMW sales, courtesy of Wikipedia:
    About 59% of i3 sales are outside the US

    Contrast that with the Chevy Bolt/Ampera, currently ~ 23k sold:
    ~ 9% of production went to Canada;
    a couple hundred to S Korea
    and a dozen or so to Norway
     
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  13. AustinPowers

    AustinPowers Total Smeghead

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    I don't think the i3 is the best EV ever made, but calling it a compliance car is ridiculous. A Ford Focus EV is a compliance car, as is the B-class ED or the Fiat 500e, but the i3 is bona-fide BEV which BMW spent billions developing. Especially the full carbon fibre body would be totally unneccessary for a compliance vehicle.
    And looking at the numbers, BMW sold 4.319 i3 in Germany last year. Tesla sold 3.332 vehicles in total, S and X. And I would wager to guess that in other markets the i3 also outsold Tesla vehicles. Perhaps not in the US though ;)
     
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  14. SageBrush

    SageBrush 2018: Drain the Sewer

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    That would be a fair argument if BMW did not see a future for carbon fibre in its other cars.
     
  15. AustinPowers

    AustinPowers Total Smeghead

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    True, but all the effort would still not have been necessary, even for R&D purposes.
     
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  16. Yggdrasill

    Yggdrasill Active Member

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    #16 Yggdrasill, Jan 22, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2018
    Not quite that bad in Norway. Around 1200 thus far and they're still trickling in.

    I agree the BMW i3 isn't a compliance car. I'd say it's more a traditional auto company's misguided idea of a BEV. Small, low range, expensive and designed to be produced in small quantities.

    It seems like a perfectly alright city car, though.
     
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  17. Yggdrasill

    Yggdrasill Active Member

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    2017 for Norway was like this:

    5271 BMW i3
    4753 Model X
    3724 Model S

    So the i3 outsold both the Model S and the Model X, but not combined.
     
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  18. smac

    smac Active Member

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    @Yggdrasil Rather than yearly sales it was easier to find fleet size. (Which to me better represents ICE's displaced to date anyway.)

    For the UK it looks like: (Figures correct as at Q3/17)

    Model S: 6,150
    Model X: 3,372

    BMW i3: 8,400 (REXs counting for 6,300 of those sales).
    BMW i8: 1,781

    Leaf: 18,893
    Zoe: 5,718

    So the i Cars just pip Tesla. overall, but the S+X have this year overtaken the i3. Credit where it's due, it is very impressive that the S has sold so many given the big price increase over the i3.

    Putting this into perspective a little though the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has a current UK fleet size of 31,000 vehicles. :eek:
    (It doesn't get the nickname Taxlander here for nothing!)
     
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  19. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    The fact is that Tesla beat BMW to a compelling all electric sports sedan. BMW investigated the area with the active-e program and then decided to go with the i3 city car. We’ll see how BMW responds to the Model 3, because they better come up with something good.
     
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  20. kzod

    kzod Member

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    So sad how Tesla fans are so threatened by other EV's. The i3 is a very cool EV. But whereas a Tesla is a great car made cooler by it's EV heritage, the negatives weigh down the BMW. Limited range means most want the range extender which means you still need oil changes and standard maintenance. But beyond that the car is amazing with the nicest interior of any car for sale today. Much friendlier place than the Model 3.
     
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