BMW i3 – One Pedal Driving Video


One Pedal Drive

One Pedal Drive

The BMW i3’s strong regenerative braking allows for one pedal driving in most situations. Here’s a BMW-made video showing how one pedal driving works.

Video description:

“In this video, learn more about the different modes of the accelerator pedal, brake energy recuperation, and One Pedal Drive in the BMW i3.”

Category: BMW


25 responses to "BMW i3 – One Pedal Driving Video"
  1. notting says:

    Recuperation wastes energy compared with just let it roll! That’s why I only want recuperation when I use the brake pedal.


    1. Pedro says:

      True. The best is having regen on demand, not by default.

      1. franky_b says:

        It is on demand and you control it with your foot.

        When do you do press the break pedal, it’s because you didn’t plan ahead or under emergency.

        And by the way, it’s not an ON & OFF switch, it is gradual regen… as the video explain, as you release the pedal, you go from accelerating, to coasting, to regen, to strong regen if you release completely. No if you drive like a tipical automatique and just let go of the pedal, yup you go directly into strong regen.

        No, it’s not complicated. Most people that tried my i3 get it within a few minutes.

    2. MikeM says:

      Not sure I’m following he logic here.

      My perspective is only from a 2014 Leaf. But it seems easy enough to “let her roll” just by go-pedal positioning.
      I transition from go to slow as needed almost without thinking.

      On long downhill runs (I do a 3500′ 40 mile one occasionally) it certainly seems better to me to be able to lift off completely at times and let her regenerate.

  2. Pedro says:

    That would stress your leg muscles in long jorneys, that’s why people like cruise control.

    Shifter Paddles to control regen are a better idea. Or using a lever like Volkswagen electric cars.

    1. MikeM says:

      I agree completely.

    2. franky_b says:

      And you think it doesn’t come with cruise control? With adaptive cruise control you can even use it at low speed.

      Shifter is a good idea, but it requires you to change you focus from the road, to do a second action. I only move my big toe 😉 I think my toe muscles can do that. 😉

      If you want to stress your leg muscles, go drive a sport car (standard shifter) in stop and go traffic. This is peanuts.

      1. Ambulator says:

        I’ve tried one pedal driving in my Volt. On the whole I don’t like it, but in heavy traffic it works well. If I had adaptive cruise control I might think better of one pedal driving.

        1. Daniel says:

          Agreed I too have tried it in my Volt, just don’t like it seems like the car is always trying to drive against itself and it takes a lot of effort to continually try to position my throttle foot in the right place. the volts throttle mapping doesn’t seem to allow for coasting

    3. miggy says:

      Thy the Outlander PHEV has the best regen system in the world.

      1. So Miggy, have you driven all the BEV’s & PHEV’s to give this first hand account?

        Not being a Tesla Owner – and only have briefly driven a friends Tesla Model S, I can say – I liked it better than a Smart ED, LEAF or iMiEV’s response, and have not driven the i3 yet so can’t compare to that yet. Just hoping that the Model 3 will offer the same options as the Model S does – selectable Regen Strength!

        1. miggy says:

          Rob, why so much hate, is was not as you say a first hand account, it is my opinion just as you have your own opinion.
          But as Tesla did follow the Outlander’s lead to the twin or duel motor setup I also see them following to paddle shifters for the regen system.

    4. ffbj says:

      Having driven over a million miles I must agree.
      Repetitive motion injuries are something to consider.

    5. Steve says:

      I cannot disagree more. The single pedal drive of the i3 is one of its very best features–I own one. Making a steering wheel paddle is so significantly worse that it’s difficult for me to believe anyone thinks that would be better unless they simply haven’t driven an i3 for any decent amount of time.

      1. franky_b says:

        And with the paddle, it’s either ON or OFF. As with the i3 implementation it is gradual if you don’t release the pedal completely.

        I tried the ELR and as I said, it is nice, but I didn’t have the control the i3 is giving me.

        I guess if you are a binary driver type (ON & OFF) you prefer the paddle implementation. If you are the control driver type, then the gradual, one pedal, implementation you prefer the i3 implementation.

        And when I read comments of the type “It’s tiring” or “it’s difficult”, How do you survived in City driving / Stop & Go Driving?

  3. Nix says:

    The only thing I didn’t like about the i3 one-pedal driving, was that it didn’t work in my Audi.

    (Yea, that’s not supposed to make sense….)

    My problem was that after I got used to driving with one pedal, I found it hard to drive other cars that didn’t drive like that. When I got in my normal gas car, I would take my foot off of the gas and for a fraction of a second expect it to slow down like an i3. Then when it didn’t, I would have this fraction of a second minor panic when I realized I needed to actually brake with my foot.

    Nothing bad, and I switched back quickly. But just annoying enough be slightly bothersome. Sort of like getting off a ferry from England, and driving on the “wrong” side of the road in Europe. It isn’t a deal breaker, just annoying.

    A variable regen would be nice. But then again maybe that would just make the problem worse, not knowing what the regen had been reset to when you get in after your spouse drives it and changes it…..

  4. Braben says:

    I think the best solution for the moment is to make EVs behave exactly like conventional automatic cars. That’s simply because most owners will have to drive an ICE car from time to time. This is one of the things Ford got right in their Energi models. Brake lightly and you use regen only. Brake a little harder and it will start seamlessly adding mechanical breaking. It also displays a “brake score” in the instrument cluster, so you learn quickly how to brake for maximum regen. I’d hate to have an extra paddle or something just for this.

    1. jelloslug says:

      That’s an awful idea. The only way to make people change is to force them to. Once they get use to it the vast majority will love it.

      1. Braben says:

        Why would you want to “force” them to change? One-pedal driving is not better or more efficient than a properly implemented two-pedal system.

        1. KK says:

          ” One-pedal driving is not better ”
          Own and i3 and have to disagree.

          “One-pedal driving is not better or more efficient than a properly implemented two-pedal system”

          The Three pedal proponents say the same of two pedals.

          EV’s need to be better not just complying with ICE’s.

          1. Braben says:

            Obviously it’s a matter of personal choice. Why not make the strength of regeneration when not braking adjustable and leave it up to the driver rather than “forcing” them?

            The worst solution in my mind is to add additional controls (such as steering wheel paddles). It’s a lazy solution for manufacturers who can’t implement a proper integrated regen system.

            1. franky_b says:

              It is adjustable… with your big toe!!!

              I don’t want to always fiddle with settings base on the continually changing dynamic of the traffic.

              With this implementation I always have the best settings. And please, it’s not that difficult to learn, it took me 10 minutes to get it. And because it always behave the same way, you quickly develop a muscle/position memory. I hit the coasting position without even thinking about it. If you ever drove standard/stick it is very similar to the muscle memory you develop, but a lot easier.

    2. EVger says:

      Braben said: “This is one of the things Ford got right in their Energi models. Brake lightly and you use regen only. Brake a little harder and it will start seamlessly adding mechanical breaking. It also displays a “brake score” in the instrument cluster, so you learn quickly how to brake for maximum regen.”

      I own the C-Max Energi and its regen/braking has worked very well for me. The C-Max Energi also regens at a lower level while coasting without touching the accelerator or brake pedal.

  5. Michael says:

    One foot driving only works if it’s optional, as in the case of the Volt (L Drive) and others. To not be able to coast in an EV is so frustrating. I hope BMW fixes this design flaw.

    1. franky_b says:

      Where did bet you can’t coast, the video says the contrary and I do it everyday.