The U.S. EPA has posted the 2017 BMW i3 with updated 94-amp-hour battery as being rated in the U.S. with 114 miles range – a 33-mile increase over the 2016 model’s 81-mile rating.
It has been known this was coming, but the ratings posted to the U.S. EPA’s FuelEconomy.gov, show the updated battery electric car’s choices are now two BEV configurations – one the same specification as last year, and the new model with 33 kWh, 94 amp-hourh battery,
Ratings for the range-extended REx version which is also to get the updated battery option are not yet posted for 2017.
The new i3 BEV was touted to be getting “50 percent” more range“, but the characteristically more strict federal government’s standards state it has 40-percent more range, or just 8 miles more than a 2016 Nissan Leaf with 30-kWh battery and 106 miles rated.
Efficiency in “MPGe” also declined slightly while still very high, and the new car is rated with 29 kWh/100 mile, versus 27 kWh per 100 mile for the 2016 and base 2017.
BMW’s i3 is one of the most advanced pieces of engineering in the world, according to Munro & Associates, which tore one down to find advanced construction techniques inside the precedent-setting carbon-fiber reinforced plastic body.
Since the advent of sub-100-mile range EVs earlier this decade, there’s been a whole subculture of folks who have learned to live with that much range, and some have said they even prefer not to pay for and lug around more battery than they need.
Others have said they want more range, and Tesla’s promised 215-mile Model 3 with 101-more miles at a minimum due as soon as next year is one example. The 2017 Chevy Bolt, due later this year is another. Chevrolet has not released EPA figures, but has said over 200 miles will be offered.
As it is, BMW’s new i3 is more competitive, and has spurred increased interest and orders in anticipation of the revised model.