BMW i3 & Chevrolet Volt
Big news from Bavaria, by way of New York City: BMW recently revealed their i3 all-electric car in production form, and MotorWeek was on hand for the high-energy spectacle.
Part of a three-city, worldwide debut- the i3’s unveiling was simulcast in New York, London, and Beijing; and with it, the specs and pricing for BMW’s radically designed EV.
Starting at $41,350 before incentives, the i3 is powered by a 170 horsepower electric motor with a range of 80-100 miles of real world driving. The interior still has that BMW premium feel, and now includes eco-friendly, “sustainably produced” materials. Its light curb weight is achieved through the use of carbon fiber reinforced plastic throughout the chassis.
BMW has plans for what they call an “Urban Mobility” movement. It’s a new way of living that incorporates a broad range of products and services for your BMW i-vehicle. A good example is 360 Electric, which offers i3 owners home and public charging options, assistance services, and access to BMW’s own car-sharing fleet for long distance traveling. Also available is BMW’s ConnectedDrive; an “On-Star-like” information and concierge service, and look for a growing array of connected smart phone apps. The i3 will be available next year.
And from an all-electric, we turn to the gasoline-electric Chevrolet Volt, which is making headlines again.
Citing the recent price drop for the Nissan Leaf EV, and bargain leases for the Fiat 500e and the brand’s own Spark EV--the 2014 Chevrolet Volt will see a $5,000 price cut. That brings the price--with federal incentives--down to $27,500. Analysts feel the “well under 30-grand pricing” could open a whole new market to the plug-in Volt.