BMW i3 BEV/REx Production Breakdown For US – BMW i8 Too

4 months ago by George Betak 20

With US sales numbers for the BMW i3 being confirmed at 358 units in June, the question of the mix of pure electrics (BEV) and range-extended (REx) vehicles arises anew.

While BMW NA does not provide this level of detail in its reporting, and does not break down sales by BEV and REx trim, we can get a glimpse of the trim mix by having  look at the production numbers. We can do that by leveraging some familiarity and knowledge of the particulars at the Leipzig factory, where the i3 is built for worldwide delivery.

BMW i3 BEV

BMW i3 BEV Production Data

As you can see, while the weekly production numbers vary a bit, a longer-term trend starts to emerge, and monthly US production figures hold fairly steady. And the gist of it is that 629 REx and 443 BEVs (US versions) were built in the month of June. We feel confident in this stat, which you won’t find anywhere else.

It’s worth noting that the REx numbers went down about 10% sequentially month-to-month, and BEV numbers continue to rise. This was a bit unexpected. Instead, it has been widely anticipated that the orders for the range-extended trim will accelerate, particularly once early adopters have taken delivery, and the demand is driven by fast followers. The REx/BEV ratio is back to 3:2, which is about where it was when BMW started manufacturing the BMW i3 in meaningful numbers for the US market this spring.

To address some of the questions on i3 production numbers, which were published a month ago, it’s worth noting that much like with early LEAFs, the vast majority, if not all available i3s, were built to order. As such, they are reflective of customer demand, and not corporate or dealer uptake projections. The production numbers and graphs above seem to reveal another interesting fact. They apparently follow a volume plan, meaning that the US market has been allocated a certain number of i3s, which are then produced to schedule. Based on this emerging short-term trend, the i3 will continue to be supply-constrained for the foreseeable future.

While sleuthing for data on the i3, we found an interesting trail leading to a greater insight on the production volume for the i8 as well. BMW apparently started building US production vehicles on March 25. While some of the early i8s were apparently display vehicles, it’s safe to say that only a tiny volume has been produced to date. While monthly production hovers around 10 units for the time being, the pace will likely pick up in the fall of this year, as previously indicated.

BMW i3 REx

BMW i3 REx Production Data

BMW i8

BMW i8 Production Data

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21 responses to "BMW i3 BEV/REx Production Breakdown For US – BMW i8 Too"

  1. David Murray says:

    I drove by my local BMW dealer in Arlington, TX this last weekend. I noticed they had one Rex on display at the front of the lot. (It was elevated on a little platform so people driving by could see it better) and they had two BEV units in the back. But it’s hard to draw much of a conclusion from that since for all we know they sold all of the Rex and nobody wanted the BEV..

    1. Darren says:

      I live up the street from BMW of Arlington. I planned on buying from them but they were very stiff on pricing and ended up buying from Houston of all places. I’ve kept an eye on their website, I don’t think they have sold one yet. Autobahn in Fort Worth has sold a few.

  2. Spec9 says:

    I saw an i3 yesterday. It looked OK but many . . . what is it? It is not a sedan, it is not a mini-van, it is not an SUV . . . I guess it is kind of a small CUV?

    I still can’t get over the weird two-tone hood that looks like someone accidentally rendered two cars on top of each other.

    1. Lou says:

      It’s not any of those. It’s a City Car .. at least that is the new category BMW is trying to create. Based on past history, when BMW does something, the copy-cats start soon after.

      1. krona2k says:

        I’m not a fan of that phrase. People at work have classed my Leaf as a city car but I don’t live in a city. Cars are just cars and if their capabilities are suitable for your requirements then they can be used wherever you live.

        It’s especially strange I think when you consider the REX version which is designed to let people take the car out of city range.

        1. Lou says:

          It’s a new term. We’ll see if it sticks our if it morphs to something else. I don’t think the range extender had anything to do with taking the car out of the city though. It’s a consumer confidence feature (aka. Range Anxiety).

          I’ve lived with a measly 40mi of EV range for 2+ years and found I rarely needed more for daily driving.

    2. Hatch says:

      To me it’s a 2-door hatchback that is sized to fit into the B-segment category.

    3. Mikael says:

      What it is? It’s small on the outside and big on the inside.

      (Which also was the slogan when Honda tried to sell a model named Pussy in Europe)

  3. Lou says:

    NICE reporting!

    Two years with a Volt has shown me I had no need for a REx 90+% of my daily driving. At $4K extra for the REx option, I ordered a BEV. Based on your VINs and weekly production numbers, looks like my car was a 1st week of July production. Apparently confirmed by the “Track My BMW” feature on the BMW USA website.

    I look forward to available DC Fast Chargers in the not to distant future. Hopefully, the BMW-Tesla meeting laid the ground work for this. NRG EVgo stations are staying to pop up around my area too. Until then, I’ll drive my ICE car on long trips, if necessary.

    Again, nice reporting guys

    1. George B says:

      Lou, thank you for your comment! Glad that you found our research useful. We will do our best to continue this effort, and build on what we learned in the past. Please stay tuned to InsideEVs for future updates.

  4. John Goreham says:

    Great report George. Wish I saw this yesterday when I published a story about PHEVs outselling BEVs. Maybe I can add it.

  5. John Goreham says:

    Don. I added a paragraph and a link to this story. Will message you a link. Cheers,

    1. George B says:

      Thank you for the comment, and the cross-link, John! Glad to hear that you found this data useful.

  6. voltowner says:

    Nice car but too expensive!!! At a time when EV’s are coming down in price, hence the Volt, Leaf, Ford Focus EV to name a few and people are finally looking to purchase mainly because of the price drop BMW comes up with the i3 at $45,000 – $52,000. The EV range is comparable to many of the other EVs on the market. If the Electric range was 150 miles then yes I could see it. In my opinion I think this is the one example a BMW is not going to sell for more because of the name. We’ll have to wait and see.

    1. danwat1234 says:

      Yeah with used EVs and the Volt coming down in price, the i3 looks mighty expensive

    2. Lou says:

      I’m a Volt owner too .. love it. Took a test drive in the i3 (2 drives actually). The i3 is a different experience. The driving experience is a lot better. Quick steering, nimble road feeling, fabulous regen braking, responsive friction braking, quick acceleration (above Volt Sport Mode). Then there is the interior .. very roomy and excellent material quality.

      Whether that’s worth another $15K is going to be a personal choice. The car is made to meet a premium expectation and it feels that way. The Volt is still a great value and drive. GM has done an excellent job with it :-)

  7. leafer says:

    dealers are already discounting the I3. especially BEV models and the $47,025 REX model without a rear view monitor. I have driven it an rear view monitor is a must have feature.

    1. Lou says:

      Rear view camera is part of the “Parking Assistant” package for all models. It buys you:
      – Parking Assistant (finds a spot you can fit in)
      – Park Distance Control (the beepers)
      – Rear view camera (can you see me now?)
      – Park Assistant Package (automatic parallel parking)

  8. Donald H McClelland says:

    Can one refill the REX fuel tank and keep going indefinitely?

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