Video: Motley Fools Says High Demand for BMW i3 May Actually Help Tesla


Could the unexpectedly high demand for the BMW i3 actually be beneficial to Tesla Motors?

BMW i3 Overhead

BMW i3 Overhead

Perhaps, but that’s not the true focus of Motley Fools’ video discussion.

In this segment of Motor Money, analyst Rex Moore and senior auto guy John Rosevear explore the future implications of BMW announcing that demand for the i3 is through the roof.

The argument goes that if demand for the $40,000-plus i3 is high, then when Tesla gets ’round to launching its similarly priced Gen 3 (Model E), demand should be way up there too.

Or, to put it another way, Motley Fool is saying that the BMW i3 shows there is demand for a relatively expensive, small-ish electric vehicle (though it’s way cheaper than the Model S), which means there should be strong demand for the Gen 3 Tesla since it sort of fits the mold of the i3.

Make sense?

Now ponder this: If the Gen 3 Tesla launched simultaneously with the BMW i3, would there still be demand for the Bimmer?  Or would the Tesla abolish all?

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28 Comments on "Video: Motley Fools Says High Demand for BMW i3 May Actually Help Tesla"

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Europeans and Asians will always choose a traditional Germany brand over an American brand, if both have comparable offers.

It’s not that. Tesla is simply too young a brand. People are buying BMWs for their reputation. Tesla has virtually none in overseas markets.

No market overseas?. Is that an affirmation? you will probably be wrong… lets wait and see.

I think he meant no market _reputation_ overseas, due simply to not having been a car company for that long. Thus, you’re both right.

Now ponder this: If the Gen 3 Tesla launched simultaneously with the BMW i3, would there still be demand for the Bimmer? Or would the Tesla abolish all?

That’s a no brainer. 200 mile vs 100 mile, $35K vs $42K?
Give me the cheaper longer range EV any day.


Yes, but what if Tesla can’t bring that to market like they promised? Their EV may end up being no better than BMW’s.

While I think the Model E segment is Tesla’s to lose, they basically have vapor right now. I still think a 200 mile BEV will trump a 100 mile anything. There is something very wonderful about never going to a gas station.

I agree with your “never going to a gas station.” Take a look at all the Volt message boards and it is all about electric miles.

It just amazes me the amount of Volts on the road w/o any effecting marketing via media or dealerships. Dealerships hurt the Volt.

I don’t understand Volt drivers that have more than 95% of their miles in electric mode. Just buy an EV at that point!

You know what I find interesting. If you look at all of the plug-in vehicle sales it turns out the ones that seem to have the highest demand are the ones that stand out as something “different.” I’ve been saying this for a while. Take the Focus EV. I think it is a great looking car. But I couldn’t bring myself to buy one because it looks just like every other gasoline focus that is half-the-price.

That’s an interesting viewpoint I hadn’t considered. One of the reasons I leased the Focus Electric is because is has nice styling and doesn’t look like it was trying too hard to yell “I’m electric!”.

It was already established during the “hybrid wars” that Toyota won for several reasons, but one of those reasons is because they had a unique style. Personally, I want an EV that people will recognize. Not because I want to say “Oooh.. look at me, I’m better than you.” Rather, because I want people to see EVs going down the road and that will make people realize that EVs are real and that they could be driving one too. People need to see the cars on the road. With a Focus EV, C-Max Energi, Fusion Energi, they just don’t get noticed. Even the Prius Plug in probably doesn’t get much recognition because it looks like every other prius on the road.

Well said!!!

Good point.

People need to notice that EVs are already on roads, otherwise they’ll believe that there isn’t demand for them, like Faux News propaganda tries to make believe.

And for the consumer, like you said, it’s more difficult to pay extra for the EV version of the same car that is available for half the price in ICE version.

Ford also went for the easy and wrong path of conversions, that is to put batteries on the trunk instead of the floor. But there are good conversions, Honda Fit EV is a good example, if Honda wanted to sell them worldwide they could be a success if priced at Leaf’s level.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m actually all for cheap PHEV conversions of existing hybrids like the PiP and Energi products. It makes sense as it is a cheap way for both the OEM and the customer to get into a plug-in vehicle with minimal effort or risk.

BUT – I’m really disappointed in Ford that with all the government money they got (way more than Tesla got) that this was the best they could come up with. They have an EV (The Focus EV) that is barely more than a compliance car with no fast charge capability. And some PHEV models. They should have developed some kind of purpose built plug-in vehicle as well.

Hit it right on the head with your assessment. For example, the Model S marketing green spiel is at the very bottom of the page on its site.

Put that Aston-Martin grill on any car and it will attract eyeballs.

Make a great looking car, sex sells whether it is a hydrogen fuel cell, natural gas, or hybrid.

Nelson, your using Tesla’s favorite trick.
To compare their vehicle which will arrive four years from now to a vehicle of today.

I remember Tesla’s previous goal of four years ago of a Model S for $49,999 after rebates, I just can’t find one 🙂

Can’t wait for my i3.

the bmw i3 is an ugly duck and you’re an idiotic moron !

You want this, don’t you? The hate is swelling in you now. Take your blog weapon. Use it. I am unarmed. Strike me down with it. Give in to your anger. With each passing moment you make yourself more my servant.

This is possibly the best response to a troll that I have ever read!

Like this one from BigPicture:
Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

Thank you. 🙂


Hahahahahahahahah! That is absolutely hilarious!

Honestly, I like the i3, but the majority of people who buy BMW, like the nice stance of BMWs, then you compare to the i3, then we have a problem. skinny tires, and wagon look a like? not sure that will be a hit.

If you soup-up a wagon, then it’s called a hot-hatchback. Those are popular

If you jack-up a wagon, then it’s called a crossover or SUV. Those are also popular.

I suspect a small very-quick EV city-wagon will also be popular. It’s what I want, even though the skinny tires are not the norm.

We’re still in that weird, early stage where every EV sale actually helps the entire segment. It puts another unit on the road where other people will see it, it more or less permanently converts another driver to running on electrons (I will NEVER go back anything that takes liquid fuel after not quite 8 months of owning a Leaf), and it creates another evangelist. Go ahead, ask an EV owner how much he or she likes his/her Leaf, Tesla, or whatever. It turns into a 5 minute sales pitch. And right now we desperately need that education effect, as many people don’t even know you can buy an EV in the US (and no, I’m not kidding; I’ve talked to many of them), or that EVs are “real cars”.

The I3 is a tease. At most it goes 100 miles on a charge, The first Manufacturer that gives substantially more range for $40,000 or less will own the EV market.