BMW i3's Range Extender Will Hurt Performance

While BMW was developing the all-new i3, most BMW enthusiasts expressed their concerns regarding its autonomy, issue addressed by manufacturer with a  range extender. BMW North America CEO Ludwig Willisch said that the range extender feature will be different than what we might expect, in an interview for Autonews.
BMW i3 and i8 1 photo
Photo: BMW
As we already knew, BMW's future all-electric city car, the i3 will be a groundbreaking piece of technology. The i3's range will be doubled by using a 2-cylinder motorcycle engine and an auxiliary generator that will be charging the car's batteries. "All it does is charge the battery and it typically kicks in only if the battery is discharged," said Willisch.

However, the bad news is that the car's performance will be affected when using the gasoline engine. "The car will not be as agile," Willisch said. "It will not have full power when it runs on the combination."

That's disappointing news for the electric BMW aficionado. Even though you can opt for an i3 without a motorcycle engine in the back, according to BMW NA CEO they expect at least 80% of the sold cars to be fitted with this device.

The i3 will go on sale later this year in the US but don't expect a significant number of cars to arrive in dealerships before 2014.

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