In this review, we're taking a study at BMW's quirky electric vehicle the i3 for 2017. The 2017 BMW i3 has received a major upgrade in the form of an all-new battery pack. The new battery pack allows the all-electric version of the i3 to drive up to 125 miles., If you get the 2017 BMW i3 Range Extended model. You can go about a 100 to 115 miles on electric only. And then the gasoline engine in the back will take over and give you another 80 kilometers. The 2017 BMW i3 (94 Ah) is available as either a pure electric vehicle or sort of a hybrid. However, this is not the same kind of hybrid as a Toyota Prius or even a Chevy Volt. You can think of a Chevy Volt as sort of a blend between an electric vehicle and a hybrid vehicle .it will operate on gasoline it will operate on electricity. And it will operate very much the same whether it's running on one or the other.
But even in the case of the Chevy Volt when it's operating as a hybrid vehicle. The gasoline engine is directly powering the wheels for the majority of the time that's not going on in the i3 this is comfortable with a backup plan the gasoline engine. In the BMW i3 Range Extender used is quite small, and it can never power the wheels directly. So it's always going to be generating power shifting that over to the vehicle's electronics. Some may go into the battery, and some may go to the wheels. Think of it this way the i3 with the Range Extender is like taking any other electric vehicle like a Tesla Model S or a Nissan Leaf and putting a trailer with a generator on it that's exactly. What's going on in the 2017 BMW i3 reliability except that it's all packaged neatly?
Under the cargo area, the 2017 BMW i3 trunk dimensions are more than just BMWs electric vehicle. In the United States, this is a way for BMW to test out new vehicle technologies in a production car. The entire car made out of carbon fiber. BMW is betting that carbon fiber will help them make cars that are lighter weight and better performing. And we will see more carbon fiber and BMW models in the future. The 2017 BMW i3 REx has fog lamps down below the adaptive LED headlamps. Well-integrated parking sensors and radar adaptive cruise control.
From the front end, the 2017 BMW i3 certainly looks narrow, but it is just the proportions of the vehicle. Because this is not appreciably smaller than a BMW 3-series although it is a decent amount taller at 157-inches long the i3 is one of the shortest cars that BMW sells in the United States. A Mini Cooper in two-door form is 6-inches shorter than this. But a Kia Soul manages to be about 6-inches longer that makes.
The 2017 i3 is a full two feet shorter than BMW 3-series sedan and 28 inches shorter than the all-new Tesla Model 3, although the i3 has a sort of front wheel drive proportion with the very short hood. It is one of the few rear-wheel drive EVs in America. Like the Volkswagen Golf EV, the Fiat 500E EV, etc. They're all front-wheel drive, but this is a rear-wheel drive vehicle. That means that the driving dynamics of the i3 are going to be more similar to your average BMW model than something like a Chevy Bolt. Because of how small electric motors can be that gives us the driving dynamics of a rear-wheel-drive car. With the interior space practicalities of a front-wheel drive car.
The quirky design of the i3 continues out back with the two-tone paint scheme. We require a backup camera in the middle section of the bumper. And then in an interesting twist, this section of the hatchback is glass. So there's a separate glass piece that is the rear windscreen, and then there is the large glass piece that hides the tail lamp modules. So the talent modules are plastic modules behind the glass.
2017 BMW i3 How Long to Charge
Under the hood, you'll find the 170 horsepower AC synchronous electric motor that electric motor produces 184 pound-feet of torque. And it sends the power right to those rear wheels via a single speed automatic transmission. Under the body of the vehicle, we find a 33 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack which is large for the mainstream. But small compared to the Tesla model 3, charging happens via either an on board 7.4-kilowatt charger that will charge this battery from zero to full in about 4.5 hours. If you have access to a level 2 charger or 80% in about 45 minutes, if you have access to a DC fast charging. Of course this is the range-extended model.
Back to the electric motor, we find 1.6-liter 2-cylinder scooter engine borrowed from a BMW C 600. This engine is good for approximately 38 horsepower, and it's connected to an electric generator. It does not power the wheels directly as I said earlier. The gasoline engine pulls its power from a 2.3-gallon gas tank at the front of the vehicle. And it can extend the range up to about 80 to 90 miles to the casual observer. May sound like what was going on in the first generation Chevy Volt. But General Motors didn't describe the way the Volt's drivetrain worked very well when it first came out. They described it as sort of the EV with the backup plan. But in reality, the Volt has an awful lot more in common with the Prius plug-in or Ford's energy hybrids. What's going on with the i3 this is an EV with a backup plan charging.
At the rear of the vehicle, we have our standard two charging connectors for level 1 and level 2 charging. And then a DC fast charge contained happens behind the flap at the front of the vehicle right next to the hood.
We don't have an electrically adjustable seat, and we don't have adjustable lumbar support. But front seat comfort is excellent in the 2017 BMW i3 Range Extender. The 2017 BMW i3 has a surprising amount of space for a vehicle this size. Especially Headroom, I have about an inch and a half of headroom, sitting relatively upright in the back seat. Now the seat bottom cushion is a little bit closed the floor and had about an inch of legroom. The important thing to keep in mind about the new i3 2017 is that this is a four-seat vehicle only.
The i3 cargo capacity is rated at just over 15 cubic feet if you opt for the electric version. And the Range Extended version that does drop down to nine cubic feet. However, very much like your average crossover, the cargo area is square which does help accept larger bags. In the back to casually stash your charging cable, if you want to hide it out of the way for emergencies. The rear seats fold completely flat with the cargo air in the back. Making it very easy to push larger items right into the cabin. And if you do that, you'll find about the same kind of cargo room back as you find in many midsize crossovers. The reason the cargo area is a little bit smaller in the Range Extended version.
The cabin preferring instead to use cloth for the majority of the seats. Up front, we find fixed headrests and adjust tight seat belts. You can see the styling going on on the relatively thin seat back. Although it is thin, it is surprisingly comfortable.
BMW decided to make the majority of the Interior out of recycled and green materials. and it's what we're seeing going on the front doors there are some hard plastics lower on the door, around the storage cubby and the speaker grille the door sill. The armrest gets some leather treatment. And then in the center of that, we have the same fabric as the seat.
The rest of the doors and the dashboard made from the stranded material. That we typically don't see used in automotive interiors. The material choices are designed to make the interior of the i3 look very futuristic as we pan across. The BMW i3 have the optional eucalyptus wood trim that flows from the passenger side on under the middle of the dashboard. And then we have the infotainment and navigation display. It sort of floats in place the screen. Continuing further down the dash, we find a few physical buttons, and a mode button and button some preset buttons.
We then find the controls for the single zone automatic climate control system, as well as the heated seats below. That we have two air vents a button to enable and disable some of the vehicles safety systems and a hazard light button because typical automotive design constraints didn't bind the i3, we don't have a hump even in the center of the vehicle.
The 2017 BMW i3 has the iDrive controller and the drive mode selector that allows us to choose between comfort Eco Pro and Pro+ mode. On the other hand, you'll find the auxiliary input, USB input, and a 12-volt power port. Instead of the typical analog dials we see in other BMW models the i3 uses a somewhat small LCD instrument cluster.
You can then use a rotary knob on the steering wheel to interact with your infotainment system. Either changing the station and modify the track on your media device. The 2017 BMW i3 have a digital speedometer, have road sign information and shows you how much power you're either charging back into the battery or how much power you're taking out of the battery.
This car just like we do in every other vehicle out there with the short wheelbase. We also get a little bit of bounce, thanks to those more cushy tires it has the effect of making the i3 feel a little bit softer out on rougher roads. The 2017 BMW i3 is going to be firmer than other EVs out there, like a Nissan Leaf or even the Chevy Volt at 50 miles an hour. Cabin noise score came in at 75 decibels, which makes this louder than the average compact van therefore in our cabin noise test.
When it comes to fuel economy, I'm going to give this a split score, because this gets 118 MPG on the EPA EV cycle. However, if the Range Extender (Rex) engages, you're going to get around 30 to 35 miles per gallon. Depending on how gentle you are on the car that 118 mpg score when you're operating in easy mode.
in America the i3 is notably more efficient than a Tesla Model S. And when the model 3 is EPA numbers come out, I would expect this to be at least 20% more efficient than the Model 3, the Tesla Model 3 and the Model S have long ranges, and they're very comfortable cars.
When talking fuel economy gasoline a lot of you might be surprised. To hear that this will get in that 30 to 35 mile per gallon range. If you're wondering, how is that possible when this vehicle weighs just over 3,000 pounds it has a two cylinder engine in the back that only displaces six-tenths of a liter.
The answer for that is that serial-hybrids are just not as efficient as the parallel hybrid. And that's why this is the only serial-hybrid in the United States. And that's exactly why we do not see serial-hybrid in the most efficient hybrids in America, like the Prius or the Hyundai Ionic those are parallel hybrids. Thanks for reading 2017 BMW i3 review.