According to BMW’s Ian Robertson, there are about 100,000 reservations from around the world from people who want to test the BMW i3. In addition, a ‘significant number of deposits’ have been made for the vehicle. Based on this high interest, Robertson feels the i3 will be a game changer in the sector.
“We are confident that with the i3 and i8 we will shift the needle because we will shape some of this technology.”Robertson differentiates the i3 from other electric vehicles on the road today because it was developed as an EV from the start (like the Nissan LEAF), instead of being a conversion from a gasoline powered vehicle (like the Ford Focus Electric or Rav4 EV).
When questioned about the pricing of the i3 electric vehicle, Robertson gave the same answer as in the past – in the same range as the BMW 3 series, which is priced between 28,800 and 38,800 euros for base versions.
The production version of the BMW i3 is slated to be unveiled in September at the Frankfurt Auto Show and will start sales before the end of the year. The Frankfurt arrival will be about 30 months after BMW first announced the “i” subbrand.
When asked if BMW was making a big gamble by entering the segment, Robertson said: “It is an investment in a future agenda, and it’s an agenda where we think zero-emission vehicles have a very, very key part to play. In the next three to four years we’ll see more development of the batteries than we have in the last 100.”