Dec 14th, 2014
DriveNow is a car-sharing joint venture from the BMW Group and the car rental company Sixt. Through this partnership BMW contributes the vehicles and automotive technology, while Sixt provides the services, the car rental know-how, the IT systems, and an extensive network of stations for customer registration. The program is now available in Munich, Berlin, Dusseldorf, Cologne, Hamburg, Vienna, and San Francisco with already has 360,000 registered customers.
Last week however, BMW annouced the availabilty of the service across three Londong boroughs: Islington, Hackney & Haringey. 210 1 Series and MINI Countryman will be available at launch, but the fleet will add 30 all-electric i3 cars in spring 2015, expanding it to a total of 300 vehicles during the course of next year.
This initiative is part of the BMW Group’s strategy to remain relevant in space imapcted by growth in urban living and shared owership. Unfortunately we haven’t had a chance to try it, but we’d love to hear you feedback if you have.
Thanks to an iOS and Android app the service seems fairly easy to use, but read on to learn all the details. continued →
Sep 6th, 2014
Apples to oranges for sure but it’s worth noting that BMW i3 sales are picking up steam. Enough as it were to outsell the venerable Model S by 70% last month. In fact the i3 moved into the second spot in terms of electric vehicle sales in the US in total. As capacity and perhaps even incentives increase, it’ll be interesting to see where sales go. All good but what does this early success mean for the chances of a fully electric MINI?
Jul 24th, 2014
Editors note: Normally we don’t bring you BMW news from our sister site, BimmerFile. However the new BMW i8 represents the best of the BMW Group’s technology in one awe-inspiring vehicle. Vast utilization of carbon fiber, intelligent power management and beautiful design make the i8 one of the most important cars released this year and perhaps even this decade. Perhaps even more salient, at the heart of the i8’s drivetrain is MINI’s 1.5L three-cylinder engine (coupled with the familiar Asin 6 speed auto) delivering an astounding 230 hp. We think the application of that power train, along with the usage of carbon fiber (BMW is the first automaker to begin using CF for mass production) make this a particularly interesting car for MINI fans.
With the key fob in my hand, I raised the door and properly maneuvered over the carbon sill and into the low seat of the BMW i8. I glance at the controls, check the mirrors and press of the start button to begin a test drive I’ve been waiting seemingly forever for.
The first thing you notice is nothing. But the lack of noise is punctuated by a glowing display that has confirmed the i8’s readiness. Pulling back the lever and slotting it into the D the i8 responds with an electric idle that belies what this car hides beneath. continued →
Feb 23rd, 2014
It’s been well known that BMW was dabbling in carbon fiber wheels and that we’d eventually see them on cars such as the i8. What we didn’t know was when we’d see them across the model range. Auto Express had a chance to speak with a few folks at BMW who shed light on the companies plans.
Dec 2nd, 2013
So there was this 135is — dirty in the wrong ways, with all the signs that it hadn’t been taken care of in a proper fashion. Yet there it was, carving up and through the four lane road we were on just west of LA. As I remarked to myself about his lack of respect for the car and inability to apex correctly, I realized I had the perfect tool to teach him a lesson: the BMW i3. While fully electric, the i3 is undeniably quick – especially in the 0-30 range, and despite its upright nature, will corner smartly with a surprising amount of feedback through the steering and the suspension.
I pulled up next to him. I could feel his eye widen as the glow of Solar orange reflected on his once Alpine White 1-Series. The light turned green and I was, gone never to be seen again.
Jul 31st, 2013
This week BMW not only took the wraps off of a car but brand and a strategy. Creating something sustainable that performs up to all expectations is a very tall order. But given our time with the i3 today we have to admit things look very promising.
Without question the BMW i3 takes some getting used to. It’s a new shape, new controls and new touch-points. There’s grass (actually pressed hemp) in the door and dash, leather tanned with environmentally friendly oils and seat backs made out of recycled bottles. Yet the first impression (especially once you step inside) is one of the future. As in this is it. Finally we have a concept car that we can buy.
It makes the BMW Active E electric test car look 20 years old rather than two. Everything has been re-thought if not re-imagined. Granted that doesn’t mean everything is different. But nothing on the i3 hasn’t at least been thought about from a new angle.
Jul 29th, 2013
It isn’t every day that BMW launches a new brand. In fact the last time it happened was in 2001 when MINI was created. And it could be argued that this is even more revolutionary than that. The new all-electric BMW i3 is a landmark in BMW’s mission to provide a completely sustainable, electric vehicle that still stays true to the Ultimate Driving Machine moniker. The BMW i3 is the first product of the new BMW i sub-brand, and is the first carbon fiber base purpose built electric car meant for the mass market. For BMW it’s a new era for mobility. For MINI fans it’s something to take note of.