BMW i3 Hits the Stage in Detroit – BMW Confirms May 2014 For US Launch – i3 Orders Exceed 11,000


The BMW i3 has hit the stage at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show.

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

With its appearance comes new news.

BMW boss in charge of sales and marketing, Ian Robertson, has confirmed to InsideEVs two points of significant interest.

First, US deliveries of the i3 will kick off in May 2014.

Second, BMW has 11,000 orders worldwide for the i3.Β  These, as Robertson tells us, are actual orders logged in BMW’s system, not them fake hand-raiser orders.

We suspect then that BMW is working hard to fulfill these existing orders.

As a refresher, the BEV version of the i3 has a base MSRP of $41,350.

The REx version starts at $45,200.

A fully loaded REx i3 comes in at $56,025.

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit - Notice The i8?

BMW i3 Live in Detroit – Notice The i8?

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

BMW i3 Live in Detroit

Categories: BMW

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50 Comments on "BMW i3 Hits the Stage in Detroit – BMW Confirms May 2014 For US Launch – i3 Orders Exceed 11,000"

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It is more expensive than the seven seater of the Tesla!

It’s not – base MSRP for the Tesla WITHOUT the 7-seat option is $69,990. The 7-seat option is $2500.

The loaded BMW has parking sensors ($500 on the Tesla), LED everything and navigation (tech package on the Tesla, $3750), a rather fancy hi-fi (Tesla’s optional hi-fi is $2500), radar guided adaptive cruise control (N/A on the Tesla), etc, etc, etc.

It is smaller and much more efficient than the Tesla, at a lower price tag. I don’t think anybody who does a lot of city driving will consider a Tesla, and if you need the range and the room, the i3 won’t be ideal for you.

As I said multiple times, it’ll sell because it’s a BMW.

The new-car market is more fashion and image than substance and utility. And BMW is always in fashion.

Doesn’t mean that the i3 is not a good tech achievement.

I welcome it, as well as any reasonable innovation that makes EVs an “object of desire” for would-be car buyers.

@Mirko. For city driving they will consider a Volt or Leaf, Tesla is out the league to compare to i3.

If 56k were my only i3 choice, I’d probably tap 15k in home equity to reach the 60 kwh MS. The EV market isn’t deep enough for me to think BMW is safe from a similar few. Teslas get around the city just fine.

Tax credit

Uh . . . no. In fact I think the i3 equipped with EVERYTHING is still probably cheaper than the cheapest Tesla Model S.

I think you need to read the price list. You can buy nearly two i3 for the price of a Tesla – but off course the Tesla has the double range – so that is the same πŸ™‚

i3 also has a lot if equipment that the Tesla is lacking, like adaptive cruise control, collission warning, self parking, Full Carbon body.

But it is car’s ment for totally different purposes, it is like comparing an Audi A1 and an Audi A7

Please be accurate rather than making broadly sweeping and misleading statements. The i3 is a sub-compact 4 seater with 80ish mile range for $41K to $56K, for $70K the Model S is a full sized sedan with 208 mile range. You get what you pay for. Your bias is so strong I wonder if you’re a BMW employee. Personally I feel the best choice would be to wait for the Tesla GenIII because I spending much over $40K for any car is excessive (and I speak for the common citizen). Unfortunately for me here in Vancouver, Canada I’m tempted by the $5,500 government incentive that unfortunately ends this March (it’s working). So I might end up with the Volt because I can’t order a basic i3 in time, and the Leaf is just too ugly. This by the way explains why to few EVs are selling. Costs are still mostly unjustified. If Chevy or Fiat sold the Spark or 500e internationally, we might see substantial sales pick up. πŸ™‚

The Volt is a great choice. I picked mine up 2 1/2 years ago. Fuel savings over that period is over 10 grand and counting. Yes you heard correct. I have saved over 10 grand in fuel compared to my 100.00 a week gas guzzler. I bought my volt before the 5000 tax credit came into effect, and mine was just over 50 grand once the taxes were factored in. (Yes I have an optioned out volt) Saying that, I would buy another one in a heart beat.
My average commute every day is 53Km here in Vancouver BC, so in fair weather I can drive for months on a tank of gas. In the winter, with all the accessories running, heat ect I tap into the generator a little bit more, but I still consider this the least expensive car to operate I have ever owned. Total costs to operate, 1.20 per day for electricity, and about 1 liter of fuel a week. Maintenance costs so far, 1 oil change, 69.00 at the dealer.

*i3 has a lot of useless equipment the Tesla doesn’t need

Interesting that they would offer a $700 DC fast charge option, when they have the REx already – and that the option they offer is essentially nonexistent in the US (SAE combo).

They might as well ask you to donate $700 to the BMW foundation πŸ™‚

Assuming you keep your car more than 3 years, you will probably see more SAE chargers appear in the US. Basically paying $700 to future proof your car.

Yes, exactly. Also, a number of early LEAF lessees have paid of the CHAdeMO port and not used it once, because it’s not available in their area. This dilemma is not unique to the i3.

Actually, ppl who can afford a new BMW rarely keep their car for more than 3 years. It feels too “old” by then πŸ™‚

Also, again, for the i3 REx option this is a redundant “future-proofing” anyway.

If you’re at the end of your range and looking for some boost – are you going to try and hunt down the only SAE charger in town and hang around for 30 minutes, or just roll into a gas station and fill 2.6 gallons in 1 minute?
Esp. considering that the former is known to have a degradation potential on your battery-pack?

You’ll have to site stats for BMW owners, otherwise that’s just a generalization/opinion. Even if they do sell it in 3 years, that would be part of the resale value. You’re also assuming they bought the REx option. And assuming there’s only 1 SAE charger in town in the future.

Well if you get the REX it costs $4K more whereas the SAE charger is just $700 more. Plus if you get the REX, you don’t get the white sticker in California.

There’s all sorts of reasons to pick one over the other and it comes down to the specific person’s needs.

Yes, that’s a personal opinion and a projection. Obviously, you are entitled to one, but others don’t have to agree. Personally, I don’t believe that this reflects reality. BMW views the i3 with REx as an electric vehicle with a backup for those occasions when a charging station is out of reach or out of order. The size of the gas tank and the CARB regulation, which goes along with it, reflect this stance as well. So yes, if you don’t believe that a QC port is needed on a REx, then by all means don’t buy it. I, for one, would get one and have inquired repeatedly about its pricing before the options list was announced. I think that it’s a good thing to have this option. In fact, my belief is that a QC port should come standard on all electric cars with the exception of plugin hybrids with a modest EV range.

@Mirko A lot of the items you listed are also options on the i3. A fully loaded, non-REx is in the low $50’s.

It isn’t a Tesla-only world.

Wow, that pre-order amount is higher than any Ford EV product for all of 2013!!!

Looks like the i3 will be the #3 winner for 2014 right behind the LEAF & Model S…


Should still see 24k Volts sold or more in 2014 jn the US and that should still outsell tesla.

Congrats to BMW! I hope they continue to see strong orders for the i3. And I hope they work on some more plug-in vehicles. I think they have a really easy winner if they make a plug-in hybrid version of their SUV.

11 000 orders for the bmw i3 ? And how many real sales? All this is the communication, eyes powder, only To impress, but nothing is true.
American people are very naive and gullible and always believe what their media are spreading and telling.

11 000 orders is in europe only, and it is real orders, so don’t wory it is already a hit..

Maybe I read a different article than you guys, but the one I read states 11,000 “actual” orders “worldwide”.

Can you put in a real order anywhere but in Europe for the i3 yet? As far as I know it is yet not possible… ergo 11 000 for Europe only.

10,989 of them must be in Norway… πŸ™‚

yes bonaire 10989 for norway, because the bmw i3 is already a failure, a flop ……in germany.
in europe VW sales 3 time more electric VW UP than bmw I3.
2 big defects are going to slow down the sale of the bmw i3 in european countries : can not lower the back windows. is necessary to open at first the front doors for opening the back doors….this is very stupid.

only 100 bmw i3 were sold in germany last december 2013, that’s a real flop.

My choice is done: ZOE !

Mais oui! Il et une chic velo…

Well… Renault buyers and BMW buyers are not in the same category so it’s not like those two are competing.

for me and for very much people, the renault zoe is the best electric car in europe, but the problem is (i am french) renault dont know how to sell.Americains have to teach Renault how we sell electric cars..

What? In November BMW said to have 10000 orders.

Now they have only 1000 sales more. That would be only 500 sales per month, globally!!!

Don’t forget that they have produced and delivered cars too. And you can hardly say that it’s globally when it’s only sold in Europe so far.
Expectations are probably higher on BMW than on most manufacturers but they will surely perform better than others in the start-up.

how many operation sae combo chargers in the USA as of May 2014?
December 2014?

worthless! cant belive they went with SAE , what good is the plug if there are no Fast chargers?
Imagine the look on the BMW owners faces when they pull up to a chademo charger and see a Leaf charging or even Imev ?
but they cant use it?

The future is full of fast chargers…

Not sure why there is such an emphasis on fast charging lately when it is very “Grid Hating”. Sure, the first few superchargers have solar panels, including the ones in ad literature, but all the ones lately have had none…

I assume any fast-SAE chargers will also just use the grid.

If you have an electric car, its far more ecofriendly to charge overnight, especially since they’re closing power plants weekly in the US. Or maybe I’m just reading POWERMAGAZINE too much.

Companies don’t like being forced to pay a license fee to their competitors. The US & German car companies did not want to pay a license fee to their Japanese competitors. That may not be on your radar but certainly is on theirs.

Going forward, charging stations will support the SAE plug once the cars are available, and presumably retrofit existing stations (which apparently is not that costly). Question is whether they will continue supporting CHAdeMO. My guess is not (in the US and Europe), and that is what LEAF owners (mostly and understandably) don’t like, but in the long run, it should benefit most.

I actually like suicide doors.

Retro suicide doors is a plus for me too, poor rear view, not so much.
Overall a B, and a good effort in blue pen.

the bmw i3 is already a flop

2 big defects are going to slow down the sale of the bmw i3 in european countries : can not lower the back windows. is necessary to open at first the front doors for opening the back doors….this is very stupid.

Its not stupid, you are stupid. crying like baby, you deserve to be sat in the back seats so no one can open the doors for you. keep your wining ass in there lol.

There can be a case when these suicide doors really become suicidal, that is when the car fall into the water. No window you can open and no door you can open. If the drive doesn’t open his door for whatever reason like consciousness or injury, you are really blocked in the car.

Same for a two door coupe.

You cant just add an sae plug to an existing chademo unit. It is not that simple and there is little money or interest in doing so by the provider of DCFC in my area .

IF you have an SAE combo plug you will be limited to the L2 J1712 charging rate available at normal public evse. You will be BETA’d out of most if not all DCFC existing currently

good luck getting home!

I’m not sure quick charging (be it SAE or CHAdeMO) matters much for the i3 (or the Leaf). For the Tesla quick charging makes sense because it has a 265 mile range (and then a 85kWh battery to recharge). So the idea of a long road trip in a Tesla is a great one – drive for 4 or so hours then use the rest stop and eat while the car recharges.

But who is going to bother trying to go cross country with an 80 mile range? I get to drive for a little more than an hour, detour to get to a quick charge, wait 30 min to recharge (assuming no line), drive another hour and then repeat? No way.

And any office/restaurant/mall is much better off providing 4 (or 8) of the 220 chargers instead of the one SAE or CHAdoMO charger that money could buy.

Oh yes because its so hard for the driver to open his door and then open the back door ya thats so bullshit…. go cry somewhere else

Interesting. It succeeds in making the ELR look like a rip-off and the Volt look like a bargain, all at once.