BMW i3

BMW i3

 

BMW i3 (94 Ah battery) EPA range and efficiency

Range

Efficiency

Combined

City

Highway

Combined

City

Highway

183 km

201 km

165 km

17,75 kWh/100 km

16,23 kWh/100 km

19,75 kWh/100 km

 

The BMW i3 is a very efficient electric car, especially at low speeds since it’s quite light. The low weight is the result of the carbon-fiber reinforced plastic bodywork.

Recently the i3 got a battery upgrade from 21,6 kWh to 33,84 kWh. This was possible with the 60 Ah cells replacement with same sized 94 Ah cells.

With the battery upgrade the EPA range was improved from 81 miles (130 km) to 114 miles (182 km). While the unrealistic NEDC range was increased from 190 km to 300 km (312 km with 19 inch wheels).

 

The i3’s battery is by far my favorite electric car battery.

Here’s why:

  • Samsung SDI cells, these prismatic 94 Ah NMC cells have a great durability.
  • Cells disposition is what it should always be. Side by side, for better heat dissipation. Having cells on top of each other is not a good idea, the top cells will get hot and degrade faster.
  • TMS (Thermal Management System) for keeping the battery at recommended temperature is very important.
  • KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) principle, since it only has 96 cells all connected in series, none in parallel.

 

Regarding power, i3’s 125 kW motor allied to low weight makes it almost impossible to beat in city traffic. The most recent version in Europe also got an improved internal charge capable to charge up to 11 kW (three phase, 16 A and 400 V). For fast charging the i3 uses the CCS standard.

 

The biggest down side is the high price common to all BMW’s cars. But there’s not doubt that the i3 is a high quality car.

 

In late 2017 or early 2018 the current 94 Ah cells in i3’s battery should be replaced with 120 Ah cells that Samsung SDI has been showing us since 2015. I think that the 120 Ah cell’s production will be initiated with the opening of Samsung SDI’s new battery factory in Europe. With the future 43,2 kWh battery the i3 will get a 160 miles (257 km) EPA range and 400 km in the NEDC fairy tale rate.

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