Monday, May 27, 2024

2018 BMW i3s: The little electric luxury car that’s really going places

This article first appeared on and is written by Sam Gomez

Battery only. 180-miles total.

That’s not bad, but, yeah, well, call me old-fashioned…. That’s not going to take me very far in my gas-guzzling life. I drink a lot and get a lot of gas, and I’m still trying to figure out how to charge an electric car. For those of you who don’t have a lot of patience, an electric car may go against to advice of your psychoanalyst, no matter what all your green-earth friends say about your carbon footprint. The 2018 BMW i3s seems an especially odd choice, given that you could easily spend well over $50,000 on one, and while it’s technically a four-seater, you only get two full doors and two half-doors after that. But you do get a lot of style and class.

The ‘s’ is a new offering this year, as is its range extender. The ‘s’ is the Sports package for the i3, which gives the model some bigger tires and a peppier motor.  The range extender is a small gasoline tank that can kick in and give the car that necessary thrust when you truly have run out of juice because you got tired of waiting in line at the charging pump.  The men who loan me these cars wisely realized that if I got something completely electric, I really would get stuck on the side of a highway somewhere with a set of cables hanging out of my opening. So they made sure to give me a bit of gas.

It’s a sharp looking car, to be sure.  You can’t miss it. Maneuverability is excellent, because it is just barely longer than a Smart Car (or so it seems), so zipping in and out of tight spots is a breeze. Passengers can feel cramped because they are. There is, however, plenty of room in the front seats.  In fact, the dash has plenty of room for all your stuff: wallets, keys, cell phone, tablets, nachos, loose change–all the stuff you can afford and none of the items you really can’t afford.

With electric cars, the trick is often to make the sure the car is truly off or on. I had to double check each time that I was properly in gear because sometimes I thought I was in gear but wasn’t, or couldn’t get in gear, only to realize that the car was not ‘on’, because there is no engine to make an engine-like sound to tell me that the clutch is engaged. Paying attention is vital, and should you have a RuPaul dance party going on, well, be careful.

Electric cars are the way of the future, kids, and soon gasoline cars will have all but disappeared from everyday consumer life. There was a time when teenagers couldn’t wait to get their driver’s license and start tearing up the road. Today I know many adults who don’t even have a driver’s license, and it’s not because it’s been revoked.

But please do me a favor: if you live in a state where an ID is necessary to vote, please be sure to have one.  We need you to vote.

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