New BMW i4 vs Tesla Model 3: verdict

Hammer and tongs, tooth and nail; the rivalry between these musclebound electric cars will be seriously hard fought...

New BMW i4 vs Tesla Model 3 rears

Our verdict

The i4 is an impressive machine. It’s fast, comfortable, extremely hushed at higher speeds and features a plush interior with a great infotainment system. So, why doesn’t it win this test? Well, judged as a performance car, it doesn’t quite have the grip, poise or balance to challenge the Model 3. For a car with an M badge on its rump, that’s rather disappointing.

And that’s particularly the case when its most direct rival is quicker, better equipped, more practical and cheaper to buy outright. Factor in its superior range, combined with Tesla’s world-beating charging infrastructure and the Model 3 remains the most compelling electric car you can buy today.

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1st  Tesla Model 3

Tesla Model 3 2022 front

For Ultra-quick; impressive capable handling; spacious and practical; Tesla’s unrivalled Supercharger network
Against Lumpier ride on broken roads; more wind noise; poorer fit and finish; less sporty driving position
Recommended options None

What Car? rating 5 stars out of 5

Read our full Tesla Model 3 review >>

Find Tesla Model 3 deals >>

2nd  BMW i4

Grey BMW i4 front cornering

For Stonking pace; comfy ride; high-quality interior; great infotainment system
Against More expensive as a cash buy; heavier – and feels it; limited rear head room; less luggage space
Recommended options Front adjustable lumbar support (£195)

What Car? rating 4 stars out of 5 

Read our full BMW i4 review >>

Find BMW i4 deals >>

Specifications: BMW i4 M50

BMW i4 2022 boot badge

Engine Two electric motor
Peak power 536bhp 
Peak torque 586Ib ft 
Gearbox 1-spd automatic
0-60mph 3.8sec
30-70mph 3.1sec
Top speed 139mph
30-0mph 9.6m
70-0mph 52.5m
Noise at 30mph db
Noise at 70mph db
Kerb weight 2290kg
Tyre size (std) 255/35 R19 (f), 285/30 R19 (r)
Estimated range 185 miles
Official range 315 miles
Efficiency 2.3 mile/kWh
Battery capacity (usable) 80.7kWh 
Rapid charging type CCS
Maximum charging rate 200kW
7kW home wallbox (0-100% charging time) 13hr 
Rapid charging, peak rate (10-80% charging time) 31min
CO2 emissions 0g/km

Specifications: Tesla Model 3 Performance

Tesla Model 3 2022 boot badge

Engine Two electric motor
Peak power 563bhp (est) 
Peak torque 497Ib ft (est) 
Gearbox 1-spd automatic
0-60mph 3.4sec
30-70mph 2.8sec
Top speed 162mph
30-0mph 9.8m
70-0mph 53.9m
Noise at 30mph 59.2db
Noise at 70mph 66.0db
Kerb weight 1919kg
Tyre size (std) 235/50 R20 
Estimated range 233 miles
Official range 340 miles
Efficiency 3.1 mile/kWh
Battery capacity (usable) 76.0kWh 
Rapid charging type CCS
Maximum charging rate 250kW
7kW home wallbox (0-100% charging time) 12hr 15min 
Rapid charging, peak rate (10-80% charging time) 25min
CO2 emissions 0g/km

Test weather conditions Cold and wet

Cars pictured

BMW i4 M50 with Dravit Grey metallic paint (£1100), Technology Plus Pack (£1900), Visibility Pack (£1500), 20in M double-spoke bicolour alloys (£1350), Comfort Pack (£1200), electric glass sunroof (£1050), M Sport front seats (£890) and carbon fibre interior trim (£500)

Tesla Model 3 Performance with Red Multi-Coat metallic paint (£2100), Enhanced Autopilot (£3400) and Black and White vegan interior (£1100)

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