BMW I3 to Have Motorcycle Engine Option for Extended Range

Jason Siu
by Jason Siu

BMW will be offering a two-cylinder motorcycle engine mated to a generator to extend the range of the i3 when it goes on sale later this year.

The package will be available as an option for i3 shoppers looking for more range out of their compact vehicle, although no cost was announced. The full-electric i3 will have a range of 60 to 90 miles on a single charge, while the motorcycle engine can extend that range to about 250 miles on a single tank of gasoline.

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Housed in the trunk and connected to a generator that helps recharge the battery, the engine will actually not transmit any mechanical power to the vehicle’s wheels. According to Herbert Diess, BMW’s head of research and development, the motorcycle engine option could be adopted by as much as 50 percent of the i3’s initial buyers. The German automaker believes that it’ll level off at about 20 percent of total orders later on.

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[Source: Automotive News]

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Jason Siu
Jason Siu

Jason Siu began his career in automotive journalism in 2003 with Modified Magazine, a property previously held by VerticalScope. As the West Coast Editor, he played a pivotal role while also extending his expertise to Modified Luxury & Exotics and Modified Mustangs. Beyond his editorial work, Jason authored two notable Cartech books. His tenure at saw him immersed in the daily news cycle, yet his passion for hands-on evaluation led him to focus on testing and product reviews, offering well-rounded recommendations to AutoGuide readers. Currently, as the Content Director for VerticalScope, Jason spearheads the content strategy for an array of online publications, a role that has him at the helm of ensuring quality and consistency across the board.

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  • Paul Paul on Jun 13, 2013

    What is the extra cost to have the motorcycle engine in the BMW i3 , I suspect it will go for a premium ?