The basic thought process was this...
1) inbound baby in a couple weeks
2) baby's are disgusting and ruin cars
3) I don't want them ruining and of the M cars
4) a slightly used (CPO 2017 in this case) i3 is cheap enough that the money we're not spending on gas 100% (and then some) costs the cost of it over 3-4 years, so long as we actually drive the thing
5) They are also essentially maintenance free driving (so long as you don't get the REX), which will be useful to my decreased free time. No engine, fuel system, transmission, etc vastly cuts down on upkeep. E.g. BMW's free maintenance covers two things on this car-- wiper blades and brake fluid
The i3 is
kind of a cool car in a lot of ways. Ways that would be much cooler with a high revving, NA engine, but cool either way. E.g.
-all the panels are plastic or CF.
-total weight of <2800 lbs for a full functional 4 seat car (took it to dinner in comfort last night with me (6'4), my brother (6'6), my super pregnant wife, and my brother's wife)
-rear wheel drive
-50:50 weight distro
-super stiff chassis
-instant throttle response
-super low COG
My option needs were pretty specific:
-94aH battery (so 2017 or later)
-No REX (adds 300 lbs, maintenance, seemingly 99% of the failure points)
-HK stereo (because my wife really cares)
-"tera world" (for the leather interior, instead of cloth interior)
-never smoked in or had an air freshener installed
-20" wheels... because that's they way you can get summers (as opposed to all seasons).
Since most cars are REX and/or have the cloth interior, it was actually pretty tough to find a car. I quickly gave up on finding one locally (seems like very few were sold in this part of the country). After 6 months, I finally found a car in Florida that met my needs. M3F member Dave B went over to check the car out for me, test drive it, and make sure it didn't have any evidence of a former life owned by a smoker or air freshener user (it didn't). So, after 2 weeks of the dealership being the worst I've ever dealt with Lauderdale BMW Pembroke Pines), it arrived at my door
Pictures from the dealer:
Wired up the garage with a 240v charger (0%-100% in ~4.5 hours):
Car in the garage for the first time:
Until the kid arrives, I'll be using it for my daily ~100 mile commute. Including today. Initial impressions:
-the car feels incredibly solid.
-It's weird to drive an EV by a real car company. Previously I've only driven ones that... aren't quite complete cars yet
-it's NOT slow. Not at all.
-it feels rwd, in every way you'd hope for
-steering feel is typical EPS, aka not great
-no engine sound is very strange. Great for DD, remarkably detracting from driving hard
-94mph top speed is seriously annoying. I'm going to try to get that removed, or at least raised the i3s's (same engine and battery) 100mph.
-interior, in tera world form, is really nice
-my driving style is not efficient. The Connected Drive app rates your driving efficiency on a scale of 1-5 stars. I'm averaging 1/2 of a star.
-regen braking takes some getting used to. It also makes the car feel strangely heavy, as if there's a ton of friction slowing you down
-LED headlights are bright!
Mods I'm considering...
-DIY trunk extension (into the area where the REX engine would be)
-bimmertech MMI carplay retrofit box
-OE BMW sunshades on the passenger rear seat
-Britax car seat base on the passenger rear seat