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Old 05-18-2011, 09:14 AM   #1
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Toronto
Posts: 21,067
More i3 Megacity Vehicle Details

Youve no doubt by now heard about BMWs i3 electric city car. The tiny runabout, which will have a rear-mounted electric motor and batteries located under the floor, has been somewhat of a hot topic among both greenies and fans of the roundel. To the conversation we now add pricing and power information, thanks to a deep inside source in Mnchen. The base sticker will be around $35,000 and the car will boast 150 fully electric hp.

Those looking to add an i3 to their stable also can expect a 99-mile range, as well as a 100-mph top speed. Luggage room is said to be an unusually capacious 14.1 cubic feet, split between the space behind the rear seats and the frunk under the hood.

BMW plans on cranking out 40,000 units per year from the new Leipzig line built just for i vehicles, a big number considering the large amount of carbon fiber that is planned for the i3: The cars passenger cell will be made from the stuff. A possible wrench in BMWs plans is the relatively recent eight-percent ownership taken in SGLBMWs partners in developing its carbon-fiber techby none other than Volkswagen Group. Talk about awkward.

More details: The technique for mounting the floor-located pancake battery has been borrowed from the Rolls-Royce 102EX (read our first drive of that all-electric behemoth here), which says a lot for the cooperation among BMW Group brands. In conjunction with the whole i sub-brand and BMWs urban-planning initiatives, the Bavarians are working hot and heavy with Siemens on the advanced stages of a 3.6-kWh wireless recharging network to be rolled out this upcoming June starting in Berlin. It will then spread worldwide to whichever markets arent too scared about recharging things via voodoo magic, er, wireless electricity.


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