New Volkswagen e-Golf vs BMW i3

Electric hatchbacks don’t come much more usable than VW’s latest e-Golf. But is it better than the radical BMW i3?...

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What Car? team
23 September 2016

New Volkswagen e-Golf vs BMW i3

Behind the wheel

Driving position, visibility, build quality

Although the e-Golf is one of the most futuristic hatches on the market, its interior is distinctly traditional. In fact, apart from some blue stitching on the steering wheel, a bespoke digital instrument panel and extra modes on the gear selector, there’s little to indicate that it’s an electric car at all. And for some, that familiarity will be a major drawcard.

By contrast, the i3’s interior looks far more modern. The upright seating position, low dashboard and large windscreen give you a panoramic view of the road ahead. BMW has also done away with traditional instrument dials, opting instead for a small digital screen ahead of the driver. Most other functions are handled by the central infotainment screen.

New Volkswagen e-Golf vs BMW i3

Our only real gripe is that the i3’s driver’s seat doesn’t offer adjustable lumbar support, even as an option, and despite looking distinctly premium, there are a few areas (such as the leading edge of the glovebox) where the VW has the BMW beaten for build quality.