The BMW i3 is an all-electric small car that uses state-of-the-art construction techniques, including super-light carbonfibre and aluminium, to offset the weight of the battery pack that’s mounted beneath its floor.
It originally offered a realistic range of between 80 and 100 miles, while the 94Ah version introduced in 2016 increased that to about 120 miles. If that's still not enough you can pay more to get a range-extender version with a two-cylinder petrol engine that can stop the batteries from running flat.
In theory, the range-extender model will keep going as long as you keep refilling its (tiny) fuel tank – but since it adds only another 80 miles or so of range, you'll be making frequent stops at petrol stations.
The high list price (even after the Government grant) may also put you off, but as a leasing option or a company car choice, the i3 can make real sense – as long as the inherent limitations and compromises involved with electric vehicles fit into your lifestyle.
It offers excellent performance, particularly around town, and is genuinely fun to drive.
More than anything, though, the i3 brings real desirability to the EV market. This is a car you can want for more reasons than pure environmental credentials – and that sets it apart from its peers.
Read on over the next few pages for everything you need to know before buying a BMW i3, including which version to choose.