I have driven BMWs for 10+ years and this all-electric BMW lives up to the ultimate driving machine claim. It is sporty and solid and handles the road like my 328i. It is filled with high technology with a large screen for nav, music, apps, and information. The construction is solid and the carbon fiber and all-aluminum construction makes the car safe and rust-free. Bodywork is actually less costly than a steel car. This is not for long trips as the practical range in temperate weather is 80-90 miles. But get the DC fast charge option as that has helped me go 300+ miles at times.
I have the base model without range extender, but this is my commuter car around the city with chargers on each end. It's not practical for a weekend trip outside the range unless you plan your travels in stages with 2+ hours in between for recharging, but I love this car for commuting to and from work (32 miles each way). It's a funky, awesome exterior and the interior build quality is eco-luxury. I love the carbon fiber details and the eco-leather on the seats. The accent lighting makes me feel like I'm driving a spaceship. Also I love how BMW is really into the electric car movement by creating new manufacturing and technology to build them. It's not just a compliance car here!!!
Revolutionary from the ground up, sitting on top of a aluminum skateboard with batteries underneath in a carbon fiber passenger space capsule while seated in a Swedish living room and catapulted forward with instant, silent torque. Perfect size, design, airy, comfortable, quick, awesome turn-in, one-foot driving. Honestly thrilling. The proof of the pudding is in daily traffic (vs. a test drive on a freeway which is also awesome) when you wish to place yourself in a certain position and the car is already there by the time you think about it, and you made no fuss while not making a fool of yourself. Unique functionality, purposeful build to be an EV; achieves mission perfectly.
The electric I3 is at heart a great BMW car. It is fun to drive, roomy, handles well, and is quite stylish. The range is ok as long as you have a second gas powered car for trips because you're not taking this one anywhere out of town. The range is ok but you learn to change your operating style to maintain the charged batteries where you feel comfortable, for me I don't let it go below about 30% even with the REX. For an urban car its great for anywhere else, I'd think twice. I have had my car for nearly 1/2 year and generally like the car...would I buy another one? Maybe. Here's the rub: The technology is good but not great, the BMW i app that goes with the car is unimpressive; the ratings on the app store are surprisingly bad. It only has a few features that matter and those are pretty predictable. I'm really unimpressed with the integration with smart phone, I expected a lot more on an electric car (see TESLA). One would think, BMW Engineering would do a better job with an app on an all electric car. As to reliability: first, I had software problems with the entertainment system, the XM radio suddenly went dead. The car spent almost 10 days in the dealership while they tried to figure it out finally replacing just about everything...not good. Secondly the tires, this is the second set of Bridgestone's I've had problems with on a BMW. My first were the Bridgestone run flats on a previous late model M3, on that car I replaced 8 tires in 2.5 years for simple punctures. So far the i3 seems on track to beat that record. In 6 months I've already replaced 2 tires for simple punctures. (i3 has no spare) and the i3 are not run flat so the problem gets a whole lot worse. One would have thought that with no spare and no run flat, BMW would have required a highly reliable tire from Bridgestone...they didn't. So overall, a qualified recommend...urban car only, electronics and tire problems, weak mobile app but fun to drive, adequate range and peppy.
8 months and 7700 miles so far. It runs ok. Driving it on deep snow is a huge challenge. Almost impossible to control it. 80 miles in summer and around 60 miles in winter on one charge. Installed 240V, 32Amp, ClipperCreek charger. No problems at all, charges the car within 3.5 hours from empty to full. Got it for 280/month with taxes for 12k miles per year. Car is not worth a cent over this price for lease. Already have uneven tire wear. More significant on rear than on front tires. I did not expect tires to last 60k miles but at least 20-25k miles. Stealership stated it is a "normal" tire wear. I almost expected them to offer me a lifetime oil change on this car, that is how knowledgeable they are. Wonder if they know any better ...