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Born Electric - The BMW i3

Driving the i3 is fun. It has a fast pace to its road feel and a precision to its steering that is all BMW. I was quite excited to live electric, driving with no petrol thats every girls dream that mean I can spend more on shoes and bags, than have to worry about the ever escalating price of petrol!

The BMW i3 was designed from the ground up as an eco car, and so it doesn't feel as compromised as rivals, which are based around a conventional platform. The BMW is a relaxing, strong performer. More importantly, it mixes incredible efficiency with quality and a greater sense of individuality than rivals. I must say although it looks small it still performs really well, at no point did I feel like I was not driving a BMW. The BMW i3 is a very well-made vehicle. It has more interior room than its footprint would indicate, it drives like a Bimmer should, and it has plenty of creature comforts and accommodations.

With its strikingly contemporary looks and that familiar blue and white badge on its nose, it would have been a surprise if the BMW i3 had failed to deliver a new and engaging driving experience. It doesn’t, although it does have a firm ride. It’s not just the i3’s efficiency that impresses – the packaging and design make it one of the most user-friendly electric cars on the market.

An although not quite a Missposhgam luxury vehicle it's quite impressive. What I should make clear about the i3 is that it's primarily an urban and suburban vehicle. It is capable of highway speeds, but when doing so a significant amount of its range and some of the more disappointing aspects of the car will become apparent. So think of it as your errands car, your get to work car.

The exterior of the 2017 BMW i3 is designed to both give a large interior space and to make sure that anyone looking at the car knows it's not your ordinary gas-guzzler. BMW's blue detailing and the i3's somewhat futuristic body shaping come together for a unique look that can be polarizing.

The i3 makes extensive use of carbon fiber in its design. The body, frame, and, indeed, most of the car are made from the stuff. This gives it a lightweight build that allows the heavy batteries to dictate the i3's low and stable center of gravity. That creates the basis for a good drive dynamic for the car, despite its boxy shape.

Regenerative braking in the BMW i3 is in stages. The higher the car's speed, the less aggressive the slowing from regenerative braking. This means that it's possible to slow the car down incrementally without touching the brakes at all – even to a full stop. At lower speeds, when the regen is aggressive, the brake lights come on automatically so other cars know you're slowing. Smart engineering from BMW that results in a lot of energy return to the car's batteries.

I must say it was very convenient to find and use the charging stations, I became a regular at Sandton Auto 30 minutes and your cars fully charged, the AC station in Melrose Arch takes a little longer so grab a cuppa if you opt for that charging station it will be a looooong wait, here are currently only 4 BMW dealerships that have DC charging stations, namely Sandton Auto, SMG Cape Town, Supertech (Durban) and Club Fountains in Pretoria. BMW South Africa’s head office in Midrand also has public charging infrastructure with two AC chargers and one DC charger. Additionally, BMW has one solar car port charger available at its HQ.



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