Could The BMW i3 Become The Police Car Of Choice In The UK?

JAN 16 2018 BY STAFF 13

It’d be better than a diesel Astra.

BMW’s i3 electric car could soon find its way on to the fleets of police forces across the United Kingdom.

EVs currently aren’t a mainstay in most British police service fleets, but as plug-in vehicles slowly become more and more mainstream, it is only inevitable that law enforcement looks to adopting the technology too.

Lincolnshire Police superintendent Phil Vickers recently tested a range-extender version of the i3 and was pleased with what he saw.

‘I drove an i3 – after 100 yards I wanted one,’ Vickers posted on Twitter. ‘After 50 miles I really wanted one! Great little car, great tech  talking to our fleet manager. I see the future’

Supt Vickers said that the i3 would be ideal for ‘Neighbourhood team, CID, possibly urban response’, but admitted that the car would only be suitable for a daytime role.

It’d be a great car for me personally, but currently just suited to our 12-hour roles where it can charge overnight,’ he said. ‘No real 24/7 policing solution from EVs yet.’

The i3 starts at just short of £30,000, so it isn’t cheap, but given the relatively young age of electric car technology, its 114 miles range (EPA) is good enough, for now.

If range anxiety is still a thing, there’s always the range extender option (REx) – as tried by Supt Vickers – which adds a small electric generator that tops up the battery. Power comes from a 33kWh battery pack that powers the rear wheels only, so it even drives like a ‘traditional’ BMW, despite being cherry picked right from the future.

Lincolnshire Police currently has a small number of Nissan Leaf EVs in its fleet, but could the futuristic i3 be joining it?

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13 Comments on "Could The BMW i3 Become The Police Car Of Choice In The UK?"

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GM Bolt is missing this market as the UK would love the Bolt hatchback design.

Just have them hit a fast charger during shift change and it should be able to work pretty well as a 24-hour vehicle.

Fast chargers become the new donut store :O)

22kWh in a 30 minutes, just as quick as the Bolt. And then you are good for another 80 miles or so.

Police car of the year. The police doesn’t even have to lock the back doors because the bad people cannot open the doors ??

I drove one for some 30 km last fall and was glad to get out of it.
Everything called:cheap. Especially the seat.

One of the Most Pathetic Cars BMW ever Put out.. Cheap Quality Materials & Build, For Big Bucks !

And you’re talking about the i3?

We have them at work, and they have worked flawless so far. Material quality is good, seats are good – and all the materials are chosen because they are easy to recycle, and may already be of recycled materials. The whole factory is run on green power..

Quality must be good, and they are used all day. People getting in and out. Then they take them home, and drive their families around.

I like the firm suspension a lot, and the stiff handling as it’s better for active driving. Others like it soft for cruising.

But what ever.. people have different tast.
That’s good, since it gives us more choises.

As far as the looks.. not their best job. It’s growing on me. To me, it’s the technology behind it. Waching it being made is like porn for people like me.

I think you are confusing Scandinavian design ethic with “cheap”. It’s an objective taste.

If you want to see what “cheap” looks like get in a first gen Nissan Leaf.

i3 has won global interior design awards, so there’s that.

QUICK, that guy in the P100D is trying to get away!

There is almost no escape in the UK.

Smile, you’re on camera.

They’re #1 in the world with numbers of CCTV cameras, compared to number of people.

When I worked for Panasonic, the education was placed in the UK, and they said (back then) that the UK had 1/5th of all CCTV cameras in the world.

So they can just wait until the person is home, and arrest the person there. That way the perp will not harm anybody else by taking chances to run from the cops.
A minor offence can lead to a car chase, and end up with dead people.