Behold a cheaper version of BMW's range extender for its i3 plug-in. And it's brought to you by ... Honda? Sort of, if you take the approach that Gadget Review took when it looked for an alternative to ponying up the $4,000 or so for the gas-powered i3 range extender that comes from the factory.

What was procured was a Honda portable generator for Home Depot for the experiment, which involved gassing the generator up in a parking lot, plugging in the i3 and going out for a cup of coffee. The result was that, after about a half-hour of charging, the i3 picked up about four miles of driving range. Not exactly revolutionary but it least a bit instructive. And given that Honda generators start at about $800, the idea, while clunky, is potentially cash-saving.

Gadget Review briefly took the experiment one-step further by trying to run the generator inside the back of the car and plugging in, complete with a rigged-up ventilation system, but the host thought better of it once he realized that there'd be suffocation involved. Why this was never tried on the Nissan Leaf, we'll never know. Check out Gadget Review's five-minute video below.

BMW i3 Information

BMW i3

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