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BMW announces pricing of new electric i3

BMW has announced pricing for its upcoming i3 electric vehicle. MSRP in the US will be $41,350 (plus a “destination & handling fee” of $925).

Prices in the UK will start at £25,680, or £369 a month (for a 36-month, 24,000-mile lease with a down payment of £2,995). BMW hasn’t said anything yet about leasing in the US.

The i3 boasts a carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic passenger cell mounted on an aluminum chassis. The synchronous electric motor delivers 170 hp and 184 lb-ft of torque, while the 22 kWh lithium-ion battery offers a range of up to 124 miles in power-saving mode, according to BMW.

The i3 has a 7.4 kW onboard charger, and SAE Combo DC fast charging is available as an option.

A two-cylinder, 650 cc gasoline engine will be available as an option at a later date, for an additional price of around 4,000 euros, BMW sources said. Note that the i3 was designed as an EV, not adapted from an existing gas-powered model.

BMW sales and marketing chief Ian Robertson told Automotive News that BMW plans to be “a significant player” in the EV market, which he says amounted to about 150,000 cars worldwide in 2012. He said that BMW plans to target second-car buyers in urban regions in the world’s main auto markets.

BMW created the separate “i” sub-brand solely for EVs, and has invested some 600 million euros in production facilities for the i3, including annual capacity of 40,000 units at its Leipzig, Germany, plant, and a new factory in Washington state that makes carbon fiber for the passenger cell.                             

BMW will release more details of the i3 at its world premiere ceremonies in London, New York and Beijing on July 29th. It’s expected to go on sale in the UK in November, and in the US in the second quarter of 2014.


Sources: BMW, Automotive News


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