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Review: 2017 BMW i3 Is Electric Fun for Everyday Use, With Some Caveats

Overview (Final Score: B)

The BMW i3 is now in its fourth year in 2017 and some improvements have made a compelling little car even more interesting. The i3 is most recognizable for its eye-catching looks, carbon fiber design and useful versatility. True to the BMW nameplate, it’s also fun to drive.

For 2017 BMW shuffled the packaging for trim levels in the i3 and added a larger battery pack option to extend the driving range over 100 miles. The base model is now known as the 60 Ah and the larger-battery option as the standard i3. The range-extended option is also still available, but only with the larger battery pack.

Buyers considering a 2017 BMW i3 should be aware that the car is designed primarily for in-city and around-town use, and it’s optimized for that. It is highway-capable and able to do freeway speeds, but range and power usage change significantly when it’s used that way.

For the urban or suburban commuter, the i3 is a nice mix of luxury, capability and ergonomics all wrapped in a good-looking package.

You can learn more about the 2017 i3 now in the full review HERE.

What We Love About the 2017 BMW i3:

 

What We Don’t Love About the 2017 BMW i3:

The i3 is a pretty little car with a good amount of luxury and capability. If the former isn’t all that important to you, the much more reasonably priced Nissan LEAF is a good option that can be had for far less money. The LEAF has more versatility in everyday use and about the same range as the base model i3. The Chevrolet Bolt EV is probably the closest real competition to the i3, and offers a very compelling package at a lower price. Especially when the longer range of the larger battery is added in on the i3. Be sure to shop around.

The 2017 BMW i3 is a great little car for those looking to get into the zero-emissions game. It’s built in a much more sustainable manner, factory-to-sales floor, than are often-cited competitors like Tesla, and it has unique styling and fun elements that aren’t found in the best-selling LEAF.

What’s more, its drive dynamics and well-designed usefulness are very good reasons to consider this little Bimmer over other EVs. For anyone living in an urban or suburban area who needs a versatile commuter, the plug on the BMW i3 is just icing on an already positive cake.

You can discover more about the 2017 i3 now in the full review HERE.

 

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