BMW celebrates two years since the i3 went on sale in Germany in November 2013, followed by i8.
According to BMW, the i3 has become the third best-selling electric car worldwide.
"Munich. Two years after it went on sale, the BMW i3 has established itself at the pinnacle of its segment worldwide. In Germany, one in every four electrically-powered vehicles sold since then has been a BMW i3, globally it is one in 10. In the listings of the most popular EV models, the BMW i3 occupies third place on a world-wide basis since its market launch in November 2013. The most important single market for the all-electric five-door is the USA, where it ranks third as well. In Norway the BMW i3 has been the best-selling model across the entire BMW range in the current year."
*Asterisk time...It's important for us to note that for comparison BMW excluded other plug-in models with ICE engine, and included the range-extender version of the i3 in with all-electric cars (without ICE backup). Solely in Germany, REx accounts for 50% of all i3 sales this year, which makes a big difference and is misleading for those comparing apples to apples.
Anyways, i3 is now produced at over 100 units a day, while i8 reached a relatively high volume of over 20 units per day. The i3 is also available in 49 countries.
BMW i3 + i8 sales worldwide - October 2015
BMW i3 & i8
In China, BMW i3 is available tax-free and avoids the local licence plate lotter, according to BMW:
"Its ability to respond to the individual requirements of customers and national legislation in the various countries also explains how the BMW i3 is the only imported electric vehicle in China which can be purchased tax-free and avoids the hurdles presented by the local licence plate lottery. For Japan a special version of the BMW i3, tailor made to accommodate the low height of the car parking spaces there, had been developed."
A positive note is that more than 80% of the BMW i3 customers worldwide come from other brands.
"Crucial element within the success story of the BMW i3 has been that it is the only EV worldwide with an optional Range Extender. In many cases – especially among customers who still had their reservations about buying an electric car – the choice of the additional small combustion engine tipped the balance in favour of the BMW i3.
With the creation of the BMW i brand and the decision to develop a purpose-built vehicle architecture, as well as passenger cells made from carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) and BMW eDrive technology for electric drive systems, the BMW Group has taken on a pioneering role in the field of personal mobility. Both the BMW i3 – designed to provide locally emission-free mobility in urban areas – and the trailblazing BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car blend the joy of driving with a premium character that is focused squarely on sustainability and also involves a resource-friendly approach to materials selection and manufacturing. This all-encompassing strategy and the compelling product attributes have helped BMW i to become the most awarded brand in automotive history during launch phase.
The BMW i3 meets the needs of demanding target groups who combine an appreciation for sustainable mobility with a desire for a driving experience that is both sophisticated and rich in emotional appeal. Its progressive design, intelligent lightweight construction, groundbreaking drive system technology and innovative connectivity turn locally emission-free mobility into a fascinating experience, opening up whole new groups of buyers to the BMW Group.
The success of the BMW i models offers clear evidence of the growing interest in sustainable personal mobility while also providing a valuable shot in the arm for the infrastructure development still required. Achieving even greater market penetration of all-electric and plug-in hybrid drive systems depends not only on attractive cars but also on an expansion of the network of public charging stations and the creation of other infrastructure-related elements. Positive examples of how the impact of electric mobility can be increased to good effect through infrastructure measures and public incentives can be found in countries such as Norway and the Netherlands."
BMW i cars worldwide (estimation) - October 2015