BMW i3 REx Gets Official EPA Rating – Electric Range Of 72 Miles, Gas Only MPG Is 39

4 months ago by Eric Loveday 125

BMW i3 REx - Now Officially EPA Rated and Ready to Be Sold

BMW i3 REx – Now Officially EPA Rated and Ready to Be Sold

The EPA has finally rated the BMW i3 REx, which means that the range-extended version of the BMW i3 can now be sold in the US.  First sales will occur later today.

Here’s a look at the official ratings for the BMW i3 REx:

BMW i3 REx Window Sticker

BMW i3 REx Window Sticker

The takeaway numbers for the BMW i3 REx are as follows:

  • 72 miles of electric-only range
  • 39 MPG in gasoline only operation
  • MPGe combined of 117
  • Total range of 150 miles

For the sake of comparison, here’s the window sticker for the BEV version of the BMW i3:

BMW i3 BEV Window Sticker

BMW i3 BEV Window Sticker

The only available EREV, aside from the BMW i3 REx, is the Chevrolet Volt.  So, we though why not include the Chevy Volt’s window sticker for comparative purposes.  Here’s that Volt window sticker:

Chevy Volt's Gas Tank Provides Up to 380 Miles of Range...i3 Can't Match That

Chevy Volt’s Gas Tank Provides Up to 380 Miles of Range…i3 Can’t Match That (Note: Chevy Volt’s 2014 Window Sticker Is Unchanged From 2013)

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125 responses to "BMW i3 REx Gets Official EPA Rating – Electric Range Of 72 Miles, Gas Only MPG Is 39"

  1. evnow says:

    Wow – 9 miles less than BEV ? I didn’t see that coming. I thought may be 2 or 3 miles less …

    1. Assaf says:

      Actually they fared better than expected. The EU REx range was 15% shorter than the BEV range. I was fearing for them an unsavory number like 69 miles ;)

      At least they cleared 70. With 150 total miles under the belt (again, I feared 130-ish) and the ability to refill quickly for an extra ~80, I think this car would be consider usable for all but the most demanding road-trip by most people.

    2. ELROY says:

      124MPGe combined BEV
      117MPGe combined Rex
      7MPGe difference

    3. George B says:

      Please don’t forget the 6% SOC, which remain in the battery when the REx turns on. This extra energy is good for 4 miles of range on the EPA test cycle, as is implied by the total range of the vehicle. Out of the 150 miles, 73 are on gas and 77 are on electricity.

  2. Josh says:

    I bet they lose %5 at the bottom since the REx turns on where the BEV would keep running down.

    72 EV range and 150 total, isn’t that going to be a problem with ZEV credits? I thought it couldn’t go further on gas than electric, so should be 143 miles on gas. Might have to clip off even more on that gas tank…

    1. Dave R says:

      After the gas runs out, you probably get to use the last bit of energy in the battery, which would explain the extra miles.

      This car would be a lot more interesting with a 4-5 gallon tank, then it wouldn’t be annoying to use on a 300+ mile road trip.

      1. George B says:

        Yes.

        1. GeorgeS says:

          @ George B

          Congrats you nailed the MPG. Very good.

          1. George B says:

            Thank you, George S! Your graciousness is much appreciated. I know from my own experience that it’s easy to get impatient with diverging opinions. Prognostication is a challenging task when the facts are few.

      2. Dan says:

        Actually, this car would be VERY annoying to use on a 300+ mile trip (with a bigger gas tank) unless other changes were made.

        The EU-spec i3 REx has the ability to turn on the REx manually, meaning that you can drive on gas without reduced performance (as the REx does not generate enough power to drive the i3 normally). So in an EU i3, you could simply turn on the REx at about 50% SOC (as BMW has recommended for European i3 drivers) and get a consistent performance profile via buffering power draw through the battery.

        The US-spec i3 is configured to maximize BMW’s CARB carbon credits; part of this requirement is that the REx cannot activate until the battery is <5% SOC. So if you need to pass someone, go up a grade, etc., you can expect to be speed limited to ~45MPH until the engine can re-build some buffer in the battery.

        1. Nix says:

          Sounds like an opportunity for aftermarket chip tuners. I’d definitely pay $50 to $100 bucks to have someone flash an i3 to the European setting. I’d probably pay another couple hundred to fit a 5-8 gallon tank.

          Not too much to pay to make a $45,000 dollar car work perfectly for my needs.

          1. CompuMagic says:

            Or you could just buy a nice and safe 5-gal gas can and fill it up for your long trips :)

  3. IDK says:

    Ouch…it will be interesting to hear some real world experiences once more hit the U.S. roads.

  4. Leafer says:

    it would be tough having a gas tank again on my car but I am considering I3 rex. With my Leaf and daily commute of 60 miles I use no gas , but have to find a charge or use my ICE for longer trips. With I3 Rex my commute will be 95% gas free(cold days I will be on the rex on the way home?) but I will be able to make more weekend trips instead of just defaulting to the ICE. Even if the batt is dead on arrival at my destination, the rex takes over and at most a top off at a gas station gets me home.

    1. kdawg says:

      That’s the beauty of the Volt. My only complaint is that it doesn’t have a 72 mile battery like the i3 does.

      Can never get enough AER.

      1. Nanda says:

        Unfortunately Volt does not has the 5th seat.

        1. EK says:

          Neither does i3…

    2. ClarksonCote says:

      Yeah, the i3 will work well for some occasional trips at 2 or 3x the range of the motor. However I wouldn’t want to take it on a 400 mile trip given all the fill-ups that would be needed.

      Another reason why, for my driving patterns, the Volt wins hands down. (Though I’d never mind having more AER ;) )

      1. Assaf says:

        Good that we have more and more choices as the years go by!

        1. Anthony says:

          Yes! The key to making EV/Plug-in sales increase by multiples each year isn’t by scaling up the Volt or Leaf, its going to be from introducing a number of models with different styles and trade-offs.

          Until we can all afford a Tesla, we’re going to have to find what works best for us.

          1. Nix says:

            I agree Anthony. There is a reason why there are so many different gas cars to choose from. The real success for EV’s will come when there are electric cars in more and more car categories than just small ~75 to 80 mile city EV’s.

  5. kdawg says:

    It’s too bad they had to game it for CARB. With a bigger gas engine and bigger gas tank, this could have been a city car AND a long distance car.

    1. David Murray says:

      I think the size of the gas engine is fine for its intended purpose. I agree that another gallon or two would make all the difference in the world on the gas tank, though. 39 mpg is also fine with me. That’s roughly what the Volt gets. Considering the engine can’t directly drive the wheels, there’s most likely a loss of efficiency there so I’m surprised it got that high!

      1. kdawg says:

        I was surprised by series design getting 39mpg as well. Regarding the gas tank, I do enough trips that are 200 to 300 miles that I wouldn’t want to have to stop every 60 miles to fill up again. I’d also be worried about maintaining 75mph on the expressway w/only a 25kW engine. It’s flat (for the most part) in Michigan.. so no worries about mountains for me.

        1. GeorgeS says:

          It’s the weight.

    2. pjwood says:

      My “long” trips would require a single gas stop. Maybe 2, or 3, every several years.

      Just as I can go an entire season without filling the Volt’s 9gal tank, I don’t think the i3 would have been far from ideal with ~3.

    3. ggpa says:

      “It’s too bad they had to game it for CARB”

      Nope, they _chose_ to game it for CARB. It would have been smarter to ignore CARB and build the car they want to build, like GM/Ford/Toyota

      1. kdawg says:

        Wouldn’t the lack of the HOV stickers impact sales in CA (and other HOV states)? Being that we don’t have HOV lanes in Michigan, I’d rather have a more functional car.

        1. Taser54 says:

          I submit that larger aftermarket gas tanks will become available. Jailbreak your I3 ReX

        2. Spies says:

          I don’t believe the i3 with the range extender was ever going to qualify for the EV only white HOV stickers in CA but would have qualified for the green ones that have since run out.
          http://insideevs.com/bmw-i3-rex-reportedly-doesnt-qualify-for-white-hov-sticker-in-california/

        3. JakeY says:

          According to BMW, the REx would never have gotten the unlimited white stickers in the first place (it was always going to get the limited green sticker that the rest of the PHEVs get) so it’s definitely not part of the decision.

          1. ModernMarvelFan says:

            They did it to get the max credit per ZEV requirement so the REx would qualify as BEVx which gets the same credit as the BEV.

            ZEV requirement is the key.

      2. Spec9 says:

        Why doesn’t the European version have a much larger tank? (It has a larger tank but only slightly larger.) Perhaps there was not enough room left?

        1. Nix says:

          Europe is a smaller place, physically. No flyover states.

        2. GSP says:

          I think that the smaller tank is needed in the US to get CARB credits that require the gas range to be less than the EV range (BEVx).

          GSP

      3. Dan says:

        There are two theories on why BMW decided to cripple the i3 REx to please the CARB gods:

        1) They realized the green stickers would be gone by the time they got to market, and were hoping that the i3 REx would qualify for white stickers (or that a new sticker category would be created). This has been an unmitigated failure on the part of BMW.

        2) BMW desperately needs all the zero carbon EV credits they can get due to the rest of their portfolio, and is content to sacrifice the user experience in the i3 REx in order to get them (the i3 REx qualifies for the same carbon credits as a full BEV in CA).

    4. Spies says:

      I prefer to say BMW chose to game it for CARB. Just like they chose not to offer a bigger battery pack in place of the range extender components.

  6. Leafer says:

    I figure this car will be very interesting to Volt owners. Course so will the next gen Volt. Long distance trips in the I3 rex will require fueling every 50 minutes to 1 hour.
    is this practical ? maybe for occasional trips.

    1. pjwood says:

      In terms of EPA range, the Volt missed the “80% drive 40 miles, or less” benchmark. It got worse, essentially if you used heat. The i3 nails the “all your daily driving needs” thing perfectly, perhaps exceeding it. This is the essence of the EREV target. And I don’t think the gas tank doesn’t negates it.

      The Detroit cognescenti may disagree.

      , and I think BMW has come much closer to nailing the perfect EREV formula.

      1. pjwood says:

        ..Oops

      2. kdawg says:

        I think the Volt and the i3 need to get together and have a child. That we we can get the AER we want, and the ICE performance we want.

        1. Open-Mind says:

          And the 0-60 acceleration we want.

          And the price we want.

          And the lack of dorky styling we want.

          1. unbiased says:

            I think they would need to adopt if they want a pretty car.
            (from a Volt owner)

            1. Nix says:

              From Tesla… *grin*

              1. GSP says:

                ROFLOL. Everything you need to know about EVs summed up in the last four comments.

                Priceless! :-)

                GSP

          2. kdawg says:

            I’m good w/the acceleration/looks(of the Volt). I think the price needs to come down though.. to put it on more shopper’s radar.

            1. George Parrott says:

              Maybe the 2016 Volt might, just might, address the range and fuel mileage concerns here?

              Disclaimer: We are on our second Volt, a 2014 after returning our 2011 at the end of that lease.

            2. Open-Mind says:

              When I bought my 2013, the discounts were $10K to $11K off MSRP. Of course, those are mostly gone now.

              1. Nix says:

                The 2014′s start with an MSRP that is already $5K less than the price of the 2013′s, so it will be interesting to see what GM does this summer/fall to discount the 2014′s.

                A $5K dollar discount on a 2014 will be the same as those $10K discounts folks got on 2013′s at the end of last year.

      3. Dan says:

        Given that 80% of Volt commute miles are electric (as per OnStar stats), I’d say GM nailed Volt’s AER.

        Without the CARB restriction on activating the REx before the battery is drained, the i3 REx would be a worthy Volt competitor. As is, it’s a bit crippled and leans too heavily on the BMW badge.

    2. Aaron says:

      That’s exactly why this car *won’t* be interesting to Volt owners. My trip from Dallas to Ft. Worth would require a charge *and* a fill-up to return back to Dallas. That is inconvenient. A Volt would make it both ways, mostly using gas.

      1. Assaf says:

        But here’s where it beats the Volt:

        - It’s a BMW.

        - BMW actually wants to sell it and presents it as a brand leader.

        Hence it is already in structural sold-out state, globally speaking.

        1. kdawg says:

          Being a BMW is actually a negative in my book.

          1. Big Solar says:

            Mine too, big time but it is the most interesting BMW I’ve ever seen.

            1. Assaf says:

              I’m not a BMW fan either, but there’s no denying it’s a higher-premium brand that doesn’t need to go cheap (price/design wise) to get customers.

              1. Big Solar says:

                I would argue that badly made cars should not be so expensive just because they have a following of yuppies. I like yuppies and all I’m just sayin…..

        2. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

          The engine is half the power of Volt’s roughly, and Volt is half a ton heavier. However, its EPA MPG is roughly the same! Pretty failtacular to me!

          1. Spec9 says:

            Yeah . . . why is the MPG only 39? I mean that is not bad but considering how small the ICE is and how light the car is, you’d expect it to be better. Is the series hybrid architecture just that inefficient? Is the little 2-cylinder ICE inefficient?

            1. kdawg says:

              Is it burning premium octane?

              1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

                Motorcycle engines usually do, though this one is so derated it might not.

                I would bet it requires it tho, assuming it in theory will be burning even less gas than the Volt per year.

          2. no comment says:

            i’m biased; i think that the best xEV in the market right now is the Chevrolet Volt. the reason is that the Volt is a car that allows me to use electric drive without changing the way that i operate a vehicle.

            to me, the BMW i3 is much ado about a car that is not particularly impressive. when the car was first announced, BMW tried to sidestep comments about the appearance of the car by attempting to focus on the presumably cutting-edge engineering and use of lightweight materials. now, when the rubber hits the road, there is little evidence that the presumably “cutting edge” materials is of any substantive benefit. to me, it just seems that the BMW i3, while admittedly not “vaporware”, is little more than a bunch of marketing hype.

            in my highly biased opinion, the Cheverolet Volt is better designed *and* better engineered…

            i reject the idea that the Volt should be penalized because it has “Chevrolet” on the nameplate when most of you fully know that the “BMW i3″ would have *never* received the reception that it is receiving if it had been called the “Chevrolet i3″.

            1. CompuMagic says:

              The fact that the i3 has a 15 year rust proof guarantee says plenty about the carbon-fiber material, combined with aluminum elsewhere in the vehicle. That fact alone helps sell me on the vehicle let alone the other great facts.

            2. pjwood says:

              The Volt is a touring car, which is a virtue over the i3. 1k pounds are actually a good thing, when it comes to ride and suspensions that can only do so much to smooth things out when a car’s weight gets down to Miata territory.

        3. Nate says:

          >>”BMW actually wants to sell it and presents it as a brand leader”

          1. That remains to be proven.

          2. So far BMW isn’t supporting this with competitive lease programs, which they would want to do if they actually wanted to sell it and present it as a brand leader.

          3. Even if it is true that BMW wants this to be a big selling leader, it will only go so far in the U.S. with the current franchise model. The independently owned dealers, and salespeople that work for them (not BMW), will figure out it takes a lot less time and work to sell their ICE models.

        4. Nate says:

          My guess is where the i3 REx beats the Volt, and where the regular i3 beats the LEAF is in the driving dynamics. BMW’s work to make this lighter should help to give it better acceleration, cornering and braking.

          The people I know who own, or have owned, BMW’s chose them for the same reasons — how they drive — not just due to the emblem.

      2. David Murray says:

        Something isn’t adding up with your statement. i live in Ft.Worth and it is only about 20 miles to Dallas. I can drive to downtown Dallas and back in my Leaf on a single charge and plenty left over. I have even managed it once in the Volt by using all side streets and staying off the highway.

      3. Nate says:

        “That’s exactly why this car *won’t* be interesting to Volt owners. My trip from Dallas to Ft. Worth would require a charge *and* a fill-up to return back to Dallas. That is inconvenient. A Volt would make it both ways, mostly using gas”

        +1

        You’re right Aaron.

        An i3 REx would require a bunch of stops to get visit our friends and family in MT. Even a Model S, which currently lacks Supercharger coverage to get to our destinations there, would have less downtime.

  7. pjwood says:

    Can someone clarify if 1.9 gallons is the “low fuel” point, or bone dry? Some cars have up to a gallon past “E”.

    1. Eric Loveday says:

      The tanks total capacity is 1.9 gallons. It should be bone dry at that point. I assume the low fuel light comes on perhaps when 1 gallon has been burned? Maybe it comes on as soon as the REx is activated? The REx is not intended for long distance trips. It’s there to get you where you need to go. Save you from being stranded. Yes, it can propel the i3 cross country, but that’s not its intended purpose.

      1. Open-Mind says:

        So every 40 miles or so, you have to start looking for the next gas station. Hoping you have enough fuel to get to one … constant range anxiety.

        That means the i3 REX is not intended for long (1000 mile) trips, medium (400 mile) trips, or short (100 mile) trips. It’s a $3K limp-home mode. This has to be one of the poorest design decisions in automotive history.

        1. Eric Loveday says:

          It can accomplish all of those trips, though it’s not designed for any of them.

          1. GSP says:

            The i3 can accomplish those trips only in areas that have a lot of gas stations. Some areas barely have enough to get to the next station in my 140 mile range motorcycle (Honda V-4).

            GSP

          2. ModernMarvelFan says:

            Hmmm…

            Can i3 REx make it up the Rocky Mountain or Sierra Nevada with that REx engine only?

            Some of those climbs are steep and long.

            1. doug liser says:

              Yes, with bicycles passing you.

  8. ggpa says:

    39 combined … I am impressed. Does anybody know what the city and highway numbers are?

    1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      That’s not much better (if at all) than Volt’s, in a vehicle that’s half a ton heavier and with ~2x the output. Kinda sad IMO.

    2. Brandon says:

      Not really “impressive” Volt gets better mileage

  9. Leafer says:

    to me both the I3 and I3 rex would be closer to perfect if they had chademo. As of now the CCS option is useless in most of the country. I spoke to some bmw dealers about this and they seemed un-aware that the 600 or so DCFC in the counry are a no go for a CCS equipped I3 .

    1. kdawg says:

      Oh no.. you started it.

      (Will someone make a Chademo to CCS adapter so we can stop having this discussion)

      1. scottf200 says:

        Just install dual public chargers. I don’t think the Nissan dealers who have a lot of the chademo DCFCs will want BMWs using their chargers

        1. Big Solar says:

          Am I the only EV owner that only charges at home?

  10. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

    So they go thru the trouble of fitting a motorcycle engine, which _should_ be more efficient in producing its relatively miniscule power output, and yet its economy is hardly better if at all than Volt’s crummy lump that’s ~2x as powerful? I guess having a serial-only hybrid based on a reciprocating ICE is as stupid as I thought, at least compared to Voltec’s intelligent multimode configuration.

    Plus, in a Volt, you don’t run in ‘limp mode’ on a discharged battery, unless you attempt to drive a racetrack or climb a mountain outside of Mountain mode. BMW shouldn’t have bothered unless they could get EPA 50MPG or more while operating the engine.

    1. Dan says:

      Many commenters bashed the decision of GM to allow Voltec to directly link up to the wheels at speed. The GM engineers are being proven wizards with each new competitor that comes out.

      Voltec really is a triumph of engineering.

      1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

        Indeed, serial operation is only superior IFF the serial genset _cannot_ be efficiently linked to an axle somehow. For example, free piston linear generators or solid-oxide fuel cells.

        Serial operation in this particular case makes sense though, due to packaging constraints. But, as we see, it’s not quite as efficient to go from engine->generator->inverter->battery->inverter->motor->axle->wheel as it is from engine->planetary gearset->axle->wheel.

        Still, you’d expect a properly-designed 25kW engine to get better efficiency, perhaps with an Atkinson cycle valvetrain. Looks like they just bunged in a Kymco and derated it.

  11. Thomas says:

    How does the EPA calculate the gas-only numbers? I was under the impression, that the car can’t maintain or even achieve the required 80 mph in REX mode.

  12. Leafer says:

    from what I have read the fuel gauge readout turns from blue to yellow as the tank nears 20 miles range or so then turns to red

    no mention of a low fuel lamp but maybe it does have one

  13. ESepulvedaBlvd says:

    Let assume for a moment you’re Jonesin’ for something German and Electric with a gas engine.

    Why wouldn’t you just lease a Fiat 500e ($210/month including tax) and a 320i ($325/month including tax)? You’d get more miles per charge, more miles per tank and less total money down. You’d still have two weeks worth of rental cars deal with the Fiat for fly aways and the 320i to drive to your beach place on the weekends (la-dee-da).

    Replace the 320i with a Volt if you want, but I still don’t get it. ‘Splain it to me, please.

    1. kdawg says:

      Would have to store/insure/maintain 2 vehicles

  14. Rav4 EV says:

    This would be a great car if it had 3 seats in the back and a chademo fast charge port.

    It is better than the Volt though as far as pure EV miles. It should go 2x as far as the Volt in EV mode which is really good.

    This makes the Plug In Prius specs even more pathetic than ever.

    1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      Chademo wouldn’t fit alongside J1772 L2 in the barn door for charging, while CCS requires just enough room for the DC pins.

      1. io says:

        Nissan, Mitsubishi and Kia somehow all managed…

  15. ffbj says:

    I think of Bmw’s as great cars that have more mechanical problems than they should, and are costly to repair. Considering the driving habits of Europeans v. Americans: it would have made more sense to have the larger tank in the U.S. vehicle, since Americans are more likely to drive longer distances.

  16. Chris B says:

    I keep coming back to the only real reason I am considering an i3 – performance. It had great acceleration and is lightweight and more “tossable” than any of its EV/EREV competition. Its utility, price, and range certainly aren’t the defining qualities that put it over the top. Imagine that…a BMW whose primary focus is on driving more than the practical stuff…who would have thunk. :)

  17. ultraturtle says:

    Can anyone explain the poor smog rating?

    1. ultraturtle says:

      I mean, the Volt emits more than double the grams of carbon dioxide per mile, yet earns a better smog rating. Has the criteria changed since the 2013 Volt sticker?

      1. JakeY says:

        CO2 is part of the GHG rating. The smog rating is smog (NOx, HC, CO emissions). Given the i3 REx uses a motorcycle engine, it’s kind of expected it doesn’t do as well in smog as a car engine.

        1. ultraturtle says:

          Thanks. Kind of figured the rating included other pollutants.

    2. Freshies says:

      The smog rating looks just a the production of compounds, like sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and particulate matter that contribute to urban smog. The production of CO2 is not part of the smog score rating. With an robust catalytic converter and other equipment, gasoline vehicles can achieve at best a smog score of 9, or PZEV status. Diesel vehicles form much more particulate matter, so the best smog score a diesel has achieved so far is a 6, which is why “clean diesel” is a bit of a misnomer.

      From my standpoint, the fact the REx only gets a 5 is a major disappointment. Even the regular Volt gets a score of 6, and the Volt with the AT-PZEV package we have has a score of 9. We have a terrible smog problem where I live during the winter, and wintertime would be when I’d be most likely using the REx engine. To have the REx belch out that much crap strikes the i3 REx off my list. The more I learn about the i3, the less interested I’ve been. I actually withdrew my deposit for one weeks ago…

      1. George B says:

        While it certainly could be better, please don’t forget that the REx will be responsible for less than 10% of the total i3 fleet miles. The Volt fleet covers 80% of total miles on electricity, and the almost exactly twice longer EV range of the i3 should drastically limit the number of miles driven on gasoline. First reports from Europe indicate a number between 5% to 10%. I rationalized the REx purchase with the fact that I ran out of charge a few times, and the tow truck that had to get me has horrible fuel economy and burned many gallons of diesel. The REx will be a far more environmentally friendly solution, even though its first-model-year implementation certainly leaves some room for improvement. The 2011 Volt did not qualify for any of the plugin vehicle benefits, and was modified and recertified by GM in the following model year. It’s easy to forget these things.

        1. pjwood says:

          I don’t like the 80% stat because we’re all men who don’t use heat, and have other cars we reach for when we’re going 60 miles. It isn’t reflective of wider adoption, more challenged destination charging, etc. The Volt does not have enough range. Even if I only used .25 gallon per day, it does not have enough range because of all the gaming one gets sucked into doing, to avoid or knock down that .25, etc.

      2. ultraturtle says:

        So much depends on one’s personal needs. The 58 mile daily round trip I need to make at 75 mph for 60% of it can be accomplished purely on electricity for all but the coldest of days 7 years from now when the battery capacity has degraded somewhat, creating 0 carbon dioxide, and 0 tailpipe smog emissions for the 100,000 miles I will have driven by that time. Should I have driven a Volt for that same distance, I will have emitted roughly 4,000 kg (2.9 times the mass of i3 itself) of carbon dioxide alone, never mind the other smog pollutants, into the atmosphere.

        1. Freshies says:

          A few thoughts. First, my main disappointment with the i3 is that BMW should have been able to do better. Unlike the Volt which was glued onto a Cruze platform, the i3 was developed from the ground up as a economical car. Yet after billions of dollars of investment and nearly 4-year longer gestation, the i3 REx is really only marginally better than the Volt. (And the i3 BEV is only marginally better than a Leaf, but that’s another story.) It doesn’t move the goalposts enough, especially considering the price.

          Second, while in terms of CO2 production the i3 REx has the advantage over the Volt, CO2 is not the only pollutant that matters. As I said, we have a terrible inversion problem, and the Volt with AT-PZEV produces less than 1/4th of the smog forming pollutants than the i3 REx. Thus, I can cover 4 miles in my Volt with gas and still make less smog particles than an i3 REx does driving 1 mile with gas. Plus, I can chose when to turn on my gas engine and drive normally at all times, while an i3 REx can do neither of those things in the US.

          For me, these were reasons enough to cancel my order.

          1. ultraturtle says:

            That the USA version of the i3 cannot choose to turn on the gasoline engine and pollute at will creates great consternation to so many, but goes against your point. Zero is less than 4 times anything.

            My reasons for purchasing the i3 REx have much more to do with the facts that it is 1.5% more efficient than the Leaf, 19.4% more efficient than the Volt, 31.5% more efficient than the Tesla Model S (85kWh) operating on electricity, and emits less than half of the carbon dioxide of the Volt per mile when operating using gasoline. The fact that it might emit a few grams more smog pollutants per mile than a Volt for the few miles I may need to drive on gasoline over its lifetime would be far outweighed by the literally tons of pollutants I would be forced to belch should I choose a Volt for the same travel need.

            Horses for courses. If I had a 25 mile round trip need, the Volt might be a fine choice.

          2. ultraturtle says:

            I’m a bit curious about the source of the claim that “the Volt with AT-PZEV produces less than 1/4th of the smog forming pollutants than the i3 REx”.

            The Monroney stickers indicate that the Volt produces 83% of the smog forming pollutants per mile of the i3 REx.

            1. Freshies says:

              From the CARB website. NMOG + NOx is g/mi is 0.03 for a rating of 9 and 0.12 for a rating of 5. It’s here: http://www.driveclean.ca.gov/Know_the_Rating/Understand_the_Smog_Rating.php

              While excessive CO2 will lead to the demise of our species over a generation or two, smog leads to deleterious health effects now. Consider yourself lucky to live in an area with clean air. It’s miserable here when our air is bad. I can’t let my kids outside, and our hospitals get filled with sick people.

              1. Open-Mind says:

                “While excessive CO2 will lead to the demise of our species over a generation or two…”

                Or the excess will be quietly absorbed by our plants and oceans that thrive on this trace gas that they both love and need for survival.

                Doesn’t much matter, since most CO2 is made in China and India, and they don’t give a crap about the impact of C02 on global cooling, global warming, climate change, climate disruption, or whatever the new name is next year.

                1. Nix says:

                  CO2 absorbed into our oceans changes the acidity of the water, and kills coral, plants, fish, etc. This is already happening, and has been documented.

                  It might be a quiet death, but if you think the oceans can just absorb CO2 with zero consequences, you are misinformed.

            2. GSP says:

              I think that the Volt sticker above is for a car without the California emissions option (AT-PZEV).

              GSP

          3. George B says:

            While I understand your reasoning and can relate to the decision taken, I’m disappointed that you would choose to take such a hypercritical point of view. Even before all facts and data is known.

            I would ask you to take the same stance when judging your decision to put the Volt above the i3. To me, CO2 is far more serious problem for the planet and for our civilization as a whole, and BMW took very aggressive steps to reduce overall CO2 emissions. Both during operation of the vehicle and its manufacture.

            Unlike the Volt, the i3 recharges much more quickly and even has an optional DC quick charge port. The range extender can be relegated to absolute emergencies, if air pollution was your top priority. The speed of charging and GM’s reluctance to upgrade it from 3 kW to 6 kW has been one of my biggest criticisms of their design. The driver is biased towards burning gas more than one would think.

            While I appreciate the Volt, I think your decision is rash and impulsive. I would urge you to reconsider it.

            1. Nate says:

              Good point. Even though on a typical day we wouldn’t make use of it, the qick charge would be nice on the Volt. On our last trip to the coast we could have improved the EV% if it had it.

  18. Peder says:

    Choices are good :)
    I’m a big BMW i3 fan but I love the Volt as well.
    If Chevy goes the three cylinder route and follows the example of the Prius with each iteration getting slightly larger with better MPG. The next Volt 2.0 could conceivable see 45 miles electric range and 45 mpg in gas mode.

    45/45 would be a very compelling number. I think they have done a good job on the styling upgrades and if they nail the style on Volt 2.0, You will be looking at a million units a year in a very short time frame.

    Cmon Chevy!

    1. George Parrott says:

      Mostly I have been seeing 50/50 as goals for the Gen 2 Volt. THAT would be major attractive IF GM can achieve it.

      1. kdawg says:

        As I rarely use gas in my Volt, and it’s typically on the expressway, the 40mpg I get is more than enough. I basically just want more AER at this point.

        1. Nate says:

          Extended range is being used less than 10% of the time for us, so the gas only mpg is pretty irrelevant. Actually, more AER isn’t even needed for our household, but I can understand how some want more. If it is increased the gas only mpg becomes less relevant to even more people … but I suppose it looks good for purposes of the window sticker:(

          Some want a 5th seat. The 5th seat is rarely used in our other, much larger, car. Something with a useful third row seat, with the same drivetrain is what I’d like to see.

          1. George B says:

            Exactly, Nate. I think you got it!

      2. Dan says:

        I don’t doubt that GM could achieve 50miles/50MPG/5 seats, but I’d rather see them achieve $25k (before rebates).

        1. Nix says:

          There have been some rumors of 2 different Volt variants in the future. One cheap with short range, and one more expensive with more range. I don’t know if there is any truth behind those rumors, but it could make everyone happy.

          Well, except for folks who want the long range at the cheap price…. Can’t satisfy everyone all the time!

  19. mindmachine says:

    Well I just don’t think I would ever buy another GM vehicle, so for me no matter how good the Volt specs might get,it is not an option for me.

    13 million cars recalled this year so far, and the ignition switch problem swept under the rug for how many years while people were dying do to that issue.

    Corporate greed is everywhere but in my book GM is at the top of the list.

    1. Nate says:

      What does the ignition switch recall that has nothing to do with the Volt or i3, have to do with BMW i3 epa mpg? Just some random GM hate under a new name?

      1. CSS says:

        I’m with Mindmachine.
        Read or listen to the book Internal Combustion by Edwin Black and you’ll know why.
        Not to mention the crushing of most all of the EV1′s manufactured… Only making a compliance level BEV now…

        1. ModernMarvelFan says:

          Still, what does your hate have anything to do with the article?

  20. Ellison says:

    Smog rating five of ten..not impressed, quick charge only is the way to go!

    1. Nate says:

      Divide by 10 (or more) to take into account the % of the time that even come to play. Same thing with the big ’37′ number, which is in the largest font size on the whole sticker. Or just keep focusing on the negative 100% of the time and be miserable.

  21. Brandon says:

    Pretty weak to be honest. And still dont see the point of the measly gas tank.

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