Some time ago while Ollie (hubs) and I were discovering the fantastic Leicester Marriott Hotel and they’re amazing new car charging points in their next step to help reduce carbon footprints we were loaned the use of an electric car.
I feel I have to be brutally honest and say since their inception I have been avoiding them, better the devil you know I guess but in my uninformed mind I presumed they were sluggish, slow and how the hell do you work the whole electric charge point thing anyway?
That being said over the recent weeks on the run up to driving this car I decided to take a look at what options there were on the market and was surprised at how many there were!
When Ollie and I arrived at the BMW dealers in Leicester not only were we super shocked to see ‘electric’ marked on some windscreens but also at just how stylish and seek the new BMW i3 is, in fact they reminded of something aesthetically beyond its years.
Aesthetically was not the only bit of this car that was almost beyond its merger years, it is loaded to the brim with the most amazing technology from things like the BMW i Navigation system that totally blows away anything I have ever thought about in terms of sat navs
This car almost does the thinking for you. Follow that up with the BMW i app that means you can not only check where it’s located, how much charge and it can also remote lock it too! … Now that’s smart! Add to it all the norms you would expect from a luxury brand like BMW like parking sensors and it really is a treat to drive.
Now next on my list of totally blown away by was the technology under the hood … now don’t get me wrong I am no motor head but what I can tell you is based on facts on how the engine works and what I felt while driving it was AMAZING!
The BMW i3 totally freaked me out when I realised that in fact it’s not like driving a manual car nor an automatic … car is truly something else , with 2 pedals I presumed it would like an automatic car, fairly sluggish and clunky but the 2 pedals are totally different, the foot brake is actually only there for emergency use and the accelerator pedal is actually a brake too … at this news I began to panic!
How it works with torque of the engine is press foot down you accelerate, lift it off and the electric motor automatically switches into generator mode that automatically slows down the engine and ultimately the car meaning the whole accelerator/braking process really is beautifully smooth and after my initial freak out I have to say I loved the concept and in fact eliminating the whole bite point of your clutch and accelerator and brake really was a refreshing way to drive.
Currently there are free charge points all round the country meaning that this emission free way of getting about is super economical and with the option to have an electric point installed at home that you can charge your car on economy 7 if you have it through the night it’s so much more cost-effective than fuel add that to no road tax and also not paying congestion charges this dynamically stylish car really is something to consider.
So much so driving this car has completely changed our personal views on electric cars and are currently looking for our next car purchase to be electric.
For those of you that are still skeptical about electric cars I am pleased to say BMW i3 does have something called the Range Extender that gives you extra reassurance that you’re not going to run out of electric and can increase the range of the batteries by 186 miles by turning on the petrol engine which will then directly charge the engine or if the batteries are empty on the car the petrol engine will cut in to give you 86 miles of petrol miles to get to a charge point as it holds a 9 litre tank for unleaded fuel…. genius!
Although this car is probably not ideal for your big old pushchair as the boot is not massive *cough cough* ok a little small, but what it doesn’t give you in boot space it certainly does give you in driveability and style!
Disclaimer: We were loaned a BMW i3 for a few days to put it through its paces and to give our honest thoughts on using it.