Category Archives: BMW

BMW i3 REX Range Extender Explained

What is a range extender? Is the BMW i3 a hybrid? In this video Alex on Autos tries to explain one of the least understood cars on sale in America.

The BMW i3 has two versions, the all electric battery version, and another, less well known, battery electric range extended hybrid. In a range extended hybrid, you get a cetrain amount of electric drive, let’s say 60 miles, and then at 60 miles, before the battery runs completely dry, a small ICE engine starts up and powers an alternator to resupply the battery with electricity. Therefore, the range extended hybrid has a gasoline engine and a plug, but the gasoline engine never directly powers the wheels.

The BMW i3 REX is a little different though because it was born from the California zero emissions vehicle (ZEV) mandate. To simplify it, by 2025, 25% of all vehicles sold in California must be “zero emissions vehicles”. But to add flexibility, California allows manufacturers to sell hybrids that are not technically ZEVs as credits towards that goal. The BMW i3 REX is technically classified in California as a BEVx, and that gives it the full amount of ZEV credits even though it has a gasoline engine on board.

The BMW i3 REX is the first of its kind to be classified as a BEVx. It is different from a Prius Prime or Chevy Volt because it has at least a 75 mile range, a range comparable to some other affordable BEV options on the market. When the battery of the REX gets to 6.5% the BMW moped engine quietly turns on to maintain the battery at 6.5% but not replenish it more than that. This is a 2 cylinder 35 hp engine so it cannot do much more. Therefore, the i3 REX is an extremely low emissions vehicle, less than plug in hybrids with larger motors as much as 175 hp.

Sounds a little scary if you are on an ascending highway at 60 mph and the only hope you have of getting to your destination is a little 2 stroke, but Alex on Autos reviews what it actually feels like to be almost out of juice in the BMW i3 REX.

Features & Specs

Drive system
AC Synchronous Electric Motor with integrated power electronics, charger and generator mode for recuperation
eDrive Motor Horsepower (hp @ rpm)
170 @ 4800
eDrive Motor Torque (lb-ft @ rpm)
184 @ 0
2-cylinder gasoline Range Extender
HV battery type
Total Battery Capacity / Cell Capacity
33 kWh / 94 Ah
Max AC Charging Power (kW)
Type of transmission
single speed automatic
Automatic gear ratios (:1)
Coefficient drag
Acceleration 0–35 mph1
Acceleration 0-60 mph1
Top speed2
93 mph
Fuel Consumption
Total Range (mi)
Up to 205
Fuel Tank Capacity (gallons)
Charging Time – Level 2 – 0-100% (hr)
Charging Time – DC 50kW – 0-80% (hr)
Wheels and tires
Tire type
Wheel Dimensions (in)
19 x 5.0 front, 19 x 5.5 rear
Tire Dimensions (mm)
155/70 front, 175/60 rear
Exterior Dimensions
Doors / Seats
Length / Width / Height (in)
157.4 / 69.9 / 62.9
Ground Clearance (in)
Curb Weight – Automatic transmission (lbs)
Weight distribution, front/rear – Automatic transmission (%)
44.0 / 56.0
Interior Dimensions
Headroom (in)
Legroom, front/rear (in)
40.5 / 31.9
Shoulder room, front/rear (in)
53.6 / 49.2
Cargo Capacity (cu ft)
9.2 – 38.8

Alfa Romeo Giulia QV Drag Races a BMW i8

Some say that the BMW i8 is the future of motoring, and have even favored it over an M3, but can it really stack up against the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio Verde?

Before answering this question, we have to consider a number of facts, the most important being the German sports car’s age, as it’s getting ready to blow four candles this year.

Secondly, the i8 uses a 1.5-liter 3-cylinder twin-turbo petrol engine, rated at 228 horses and 236 pound-feet (320 Nm) of torque, but it’s backed up by an electric motor providing an extra 129 HP and 184 lb-ft (250 Nm) of torque.

The combined system output is 357 HP and 420 lb-ft (570 Nm) of torque, which allows it to sprint from rest to 62 mph (100 km/h) in just 4.4 seconds, and up to an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h).

On the other hand, the Alfa Romeo Giulia QV is powered by a 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6 engine, said to have been cooked up with Ferrari’s expertise, rated at 505 HP and 443 lb-ft (600 Nm) of torque. Going from naught to 62 mph (100 km/h) takes 3.9 seconds, but give it enough space and it will eventually reach 190 mph (305 km/h), always according to the manufacture.

So, ready to see how the two potent machines stand against each other in a half-mile drag race? Just hit play below.

SOURCE: Carscoops

Is the BMW i8 Worth $150,000?

If you are looking for a head turning serial electric hybrid, Doug DeMuro, says, “Yes!” The BMW i8 is not only a futuristic looking way to reduce your dependence on oil, but also a lot of fun to drive. Doug mentions how well the hybrid handles at speed, and it has a lot of pop, sporting a 0-60 in around 4 seconds. Another interesting thing about the video is how BMW simulates the sound of a V8 engine into the cabin when you punch the “gas”.

Upcoming electric cars that will conquer the market this year

In the past 5 years we’ve seen an increase in electric car manufacturing. Many international developers strongly believe that the future of the auto industry will depend on eco-friendly vehicles. Going green is no longer a luxury, and believe it or not, recent models of electric cars are no longer over-priced. In fact, some have pretty amazing built-ins and in-car technicals to surpass the efficiency and performance of conventional vehicles that run on gas. This year, the industry has spiked in eco-friendly cars; starting from the simplest all the way to the most groundbreaking. Here’s a quick guide with 5 “green” cars that will most like win you over.


Hyundai IONIQ

Toyota Prius, it’s time for you to move over! IONIQ is here to take your spot. Even though it’s too early to tell whether or not Hyundai’s IONIQ model will be better than the Prius, rumor has it that it will be a fair competitor. The hybrid auto market is on the roll, and as new technologies emerge, it’s tough for manufacturers to stay on top. Hyundai has always been an ambitious car maker, and even though we can’t know for sure how advanced and powerful IONIQ will be, we can state that the plug-in hybrid will create some sort of hype. Rumor has it that the new model will deliver an incredible driving experience; apparently, some of the built-in features will provide a driving experience no other eco vehicle is currently offering.

Nissan Leaf

Nissan’s Leaf model is the most popular type of electric car in the world. Nearly 200,000 models have been sold since the release. The manufacturers are still making upgrades, and this year’s variant looks and feels better than ever. The latest Leaf comes with a 30 kWh battery, which is enough to drive for 155 miles. Why are casual driver so in love with this electric vehicle? First, because it is affordable – $18,000 on average – on average, and second because it looks nice both on the inside and on the outside. Nissan Leaf is comfortable, relaxing to drive and quiet. It is an electric pioneer that drivers are quite fond of!

Tesla Model X

There’s something about Tesla that keeps us interested. The company’s recent Model X is quite the beauty. It can easily get to 60 mph in roughly 3.2 seconds, not to mention that it looks pretty awesome too. Some say that Tesla’s Model X will be the best electric car of the year. It features enough room to fit up to 7 individuals, and it completely redefined in-car design. Sleek, modern and high-tech on the inside, Model X has certainly piqued our interest. The manufacturers argue that it is also the fastest electric car in the world, as well as the most capable utility vehicles created thus far. Safety is Model X’s biggest trump card. Considering it packs floor-mounted battery meant to lower its gravity center, the risk of rolling is extremely low.

tesla model x

Chevrolet Bolt

Chevy Bolt may not benefit from Tesla’s technology, but it’s still an electric vehicle with great potential. In fact, rumor has it that the most is the most anticipated of the year. The model will be hitting the market pretty soon, and many buyers are excited to test it out especially because it comes at an affordable cost – on average, $30,000. The fully electric hatchback offers seating for 5 people, thus making it ideal for small families. The engine can handle a mileage of 200, and the quick charging (30 minutes for 90 miles) will surely appeal to potential customers.

BMW i3

BMW’s i3 model is a remarkable electric hatchback. Featuring a rather unusual exterior built, we cannot help but wonder who thought of the design. The structure is made of carbon fiber, and as for the electric powertrain, the i3 packs legendary driving dynamics. Due to a low gravity center, the cars can easily go from 0 to 60mph in roughly 6.5 seconds. In terms of charging, this urban beauty doesn’t take longer than 3 hours to reach its full potential.


Numerous other electric cars are preparing to enter the market. Some see promising, whereas others are just pure science fiction. We still hope for Porsche’s Mission E to emerge so that Tesla can have some real competition.

By Christopher Austin and!


The BMW i8: Even Hybrid Cars Can Look And Sound Great!

BMW have built some fantastic vehicles in the past, and it looks like a trend that’s set to continue well into the future. The German firm is taking an active interest in alternative fuel technologies. One of the most notable examples of hybrid technology is the BMW i8.

If you’ve not heard of that model before, let me tell you more about it. It’s a hybrid sports car that’s powered by electric motors and a small three-cylinder engine. Of course, the only downside is that it’s one of the world’s most expensive sports cars!

Still, if money is no object and you’d like to drive a stylish, high-performance and eco-friendly car, the BMW i8 is for you!

Image Credit

It looks futuristic – in a good way

I don’t know about you but have you ever noticed just how weird today’s hybrid cars look? Car manufacturers associate hybrid vehicles as ones that should look futuristic. I get that car makers want to think outside the box when it comes to styling.

But some cars are just too out there. Toyota Prius, I’m looking at you!

The fantastic thing about the BMW i8 is that it too seems futuristic – but in a GOOD way! The contours of the vehicle match the front and rear ends well. It doesn’t look like a car Homer Simpson would have designed!

It uses lots of carbon fibre

We all know that car batteries weigh a lot. The heaviest are the ones that get used for electric and hybrid vehicles.

That’s not a good thing when you’re trying to design a fast hybrid sports car! To overcome this problem, BMW have used lots of carbon fibre. It’s 50% lighter than steel and 30% lighter than aluminium. But it’s just as strong as both metals.

The door architecture is amazing

When you open the doors on the BMW i8, one thing you will notice is that it uses “dihedral doors.” Or, as the guys at Thames Motor Group put it, gullwing doors! They are the kind of doors you might see on cars like Lamborghinis and even the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG.

They swing upwards when opened. You might think that it’s not possible to do that, given how heavy car doors are. But BMW claim that the doors are 50% lighter than conventional ones.

It’s a good performance sports car

The car boasts 0-60 mph speeds of just 4.3 seconds. And the eDrive system boasts a total power output of 231 brake horsepower. It doesn’t sound like much, given that cars like the BMW M4 have more power.

But you need to bear in mind this car is lightweight. The power to weight ratio is different in the BMW i8.

On the BMW i3 Concept Coupe

BMW is finally entering the electric vehicle market with their i series after clinging to absolute confidence in clean diesel technology for years. The most promising prospect of the their concept stable is probably the BMW i3 Concept Coupe: a highway capable, two-door hatchback with a subtle futuristic style and hints of the traditional BMW heritage. The Coupe appears much closer to production design than the  “Megacity Vehicle” i3 and the supercar BMW i8 seen below:

The i3 Coupe is a happy medium between the outrageously designed super hybrid i8 that is predicted to accelerate from 0-60 in less than 5 seconds, and the neighborhood electric vehicle i3, according to the specs.
The BMW i3 Coupe can drive 80 to 100 miles before requiring charging. Through optional DC fast charging, the battery can be replenished to 80% charge within less than 30 minutes.  The coupe will also feature ConnectDrive, which includes a navigational panel that indicates most efficient routes, the locations of charging stations, and a remote app for your smartphone.  The i3 Coupe sports a hefty 170 hp engine, which is a lot for its lightweight frame and instant max torque at the rear wheels.  So it looks like BMW will maintain some of its sporting heritage with this coupe, even if it does look a lot like BMW inspired Leaf.  BMW anticipates the price to be at least $40,000 before tax credits.  It will be a gamble to see if BMW fans and electric car lovers will embrace a BMW at that price without the finely tuned machismo growl