The 2014 BMW i3 is an unlikely product from a company that was late to embrace hybrid technology and which for years was insistent – and in ways, still is – that hydrogen fuel cells were the alternative fuel of the future. This is in part what makes the BMW i3 such an amazing automobile, as it demonstrates the engineering expertise of a company that only recently got on-board the electrification bandwagon. Of course, there were a number of pilot projects along the way – the MINIe and the BMW ActiveE most notably – but it’s all lead up to this moment: the production of a real-world, every-day electric car that’s not only reasonably priced, but also relatively fun to drive.
In some ways, the German brand owns the segment right from the start, as no other luxury automaker is producing an entry-level, pure-electric vehicle. The i3 certainly sets the bar high for any that would follow, and it serves as an enticing introduction to what promises to be a successful ‘i strategy’ in electric mobility from BMW.