BMW has joined the green car market with the i3, an all-electric small city car, and the i8, a powerful hybrid sports car featuring an electric motor with a three-cylinder combustion engine.
The BMW i3 Concept, which features rear-wheel drive, is making its debut at the current Frankfurt auto show.
Both cars are constructed with light-weight aluminum structures and carbon fiber bodies and will operate on smaller batteries without sacrificing efficiency.
The i3 is expected to travel as far as 95 miles on a single charge; the i8 will have 21-mile range on its electric engine.
BMW hasn’t announced pricing, but the i3 should be available in late 2012 or early 2013 and the i8 in 2014.
Selected specifications of the BMW i3 Concept:
Number of seats: 4
Top speed: 93 mph.
Acceleration: 0-60 kph, 3.9 seconds; 0-100 kph, 7.9 seconds.
Electric range: Everyday range: 80-100 miles.
Battery charge time: Standard: 6 hours (100 percent charge); 1 hour (80 percent charge)
Article Last Updated: July 31, 2011.
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A sports, travel and business journalist for more than 45 years, James has written the new car review column The Weekly Driver since 2004.
In addition to this site, James writes a Sunday automotive column for The San Jose Mercury and East Bay Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., and a monthly auto review column for Gulfshore Business, a magazine in Southwest Florida.
An author and contributor to many newspapers, magazines and online publications, James has co-hosted The Weekly Driver Podcast since 2017.