BMW says 80 percent of i3 plug-in EV buyers come from other brands

  • Image Credit: Sebastian Blanco
BMW is feeling continued good vibes from its recently launched i sub-brand of plug-in vehicles. The German automaker, which started selling its i3 battery-electric vehicle in Europe late last year, is finding better-than-expected demand for both the i3 and the i8 plug-in hybrid, Automotive News Europe says, citing an interview with BMW executive Ian Robertson.

The i3 is attracting a lot of new blood, too. Robertson said about 80 percent of new i3 owners were not previously Ultimate Driving Machine loyalists, indicating the curiosity factor for the company's new plug-in models runs high, Robertson says. BMW has sold more than 3,000 i3 vehicles since debuting the model in Europe last November. In April, the company boosted daily production of the i3 from its German factory to about 100 units from 70. Read more from Robertson here.

Europe's largest markets for the i3 are the UK, Germany and Norway. In the US, BMW sold 336 i3 vehicles in May, its first month of sales here. The i3 was recently rated to go 81 miles on a single charge when it has an electric engine only. When equipped with gas-powered range-extender, the car can go 72 miles on a single charge and another 78 on gas. Check here for our First Drive impressions of the i3.

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