Home » Remember That High-Mileage Electric Car I Bought With A Bad Battery? I Just Got Its Pack Replaced For Free. Here’s A First Look At Its Overall Condition

Remember That High-Mileage Electric Car I Bought With A Bad Battery? I Just Got Its Pack Replaced For Free. Here’s A First Look At Its Overall Condition

Bmw I3 Rex
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It was supposed to have taken six to eight weeks for my BMW i3’s new battery to ship from Germany to the U.S., but after only 10 days, the dealer from whom I bought the Cheapest BMW i3 in the country gave me a call. “Your car is ready. We replaced your bad battery,” the representative told me after I’d spent just $10,500 on the high-mileage EV and then leveraged a California Air Resources Board rule to get BMW to completely replace my worn-out battery pack free of charge. With the job apparently done, the dealer dropped the car off at my workplace the other day; here’s a close look at the overall condition of what could be the EV Deal of the Century.

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Why Buying A High-Mileage EV With A Bad Battery Was A Stroke Of Genius

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To bring you up to speed on this i3, it’s a vehicle I’d been looking to buy as a commuter car. I recently moved from metro Detroit to LA, and found myself constantly worried about folks scratching or dinging my 1985 Jeep J10 or 1966 Ford Mustang. Plus, as someone used to Michigan’s wide, empty roads, I just didn’t feel safe driving my old cars in crowded LA, especially in any less-than-optimal weather conditions (when it rains, the highway becomes Mad Max). Here’s what I wrote in my story “Why I Bought My Currently-Broken BMW i3: LA Was Making Me Fall Out Of Love With My Old Cars“:

But the big factors are me feeling safe, being able to park [in something small like the i3], not dealing with the sting of pouring hundreds of dollars into a car each week, getting the EV experience, saving my old machines from potential fender-benders, but above all: It’s about preserving my love for those machines. Because commuting in them, especially when I’m running late for a meeting, turns what I see as beautiful mechanical-partners into utilitarian objects that frankly don’t really do this specific job that well. And my old cars are so much more than that.

Getting the EV experience is important to me as leader of an automotive publication in 2023, but balancing that desire with my cheap-bastardism and my desire to drive an enthusiast car put me in a tough spot. I didn’t want to own a standard economy-electric car like a Nissan Leaf or Chevy Bolt; they’re cool in a way, sure, but I’d hardly call them enthusiast cars. The more I searched for an affordable EV, the more the i3 — with its beautiful interior and bizarre architecture comprised of a carbon fiber body on an aluminum skateboard chassis — stood out from the crowd.

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A quick Google search revealed that the very cheapest BMW i3 being sold by a dealership was just 100 miles south of me near San Diego. Asking price? Just $10,499, and upon arriving at the dealership, I would learn why.

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At 134,000 miles, a typical gasoline car would perform at least 95 percent as well as it did when brand new. Range would be the same, power would be the same, and handling would likely be similar. But EVs can be a bit different in that regard as I found when I sat in the driver’s seat and looked at the i3’s range: just 48 miles. That’s only two thirds of what the car’s official EPA-rated electric-only range should be (the 24 mile range number on the left in the photo below applies to the gasoline “range extender” under the rear floor. That acts as a generator once the battery is out of juice, and allows you to get to the nearest charger):

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Unfortunately, the BMW dealership selling the car refused to hold the car for me while it ran a battery test (I think all dealers should be required to offer battery health info when selling an electrified car). I had to buy the car first, then hope the results of the battery test were positive. A battery test should typically result in a document that shows percentage of overall capacity — like this:

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Anyway, I decided to take the risk; after dropping over $11,500 after tax, I never did see a document like the one above, I just received a call from the dealership telling me the car would only drive 30 miles on a single charge — less than what I’d seen on the car’s screen during my test drive.

Unfortunately, when I bought the car, the dealer had told me its eight-year, 100,000 mile warranty had elapsed. “Your car has no warranty left on its battery,” I recall the dealer telling me. So now that the dealer had called me after apparently testing the battery, and found a range of just 30 miles, I had a choice to make: Did I still want a car that can only do 30 miles on a charge?

The answer to that is a definite “No,” but did I want to spend more money on an EV with more range? An even more emphatic “No.”

So I did a bit of digging. And after calling up the California Air Resources Board, as well as BMW, nobody was able to definitively tell me if I could leverage the “California Emission Control Warranty—PZEV” I found in the car’s owner’s manual to get a new battery pack. Per the i3’s manual, it seemed that the warranty should apply to my new weak-battery’d vehicle:

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The bottom of this other section from the owner’s manual makes things fairly clear: My battery pack should be warrantied for 10 years, 150,000 miles:

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Eventually, I called a car-guy at the BMW dealer — a younger guy who’d been showing me photos of the heavy wrenching he’d been doing on his E46 3 Series — and showed him that part of the owner’s manual. He ran it by his manager and called me back, saying: “So, we’re going to be able to replace your battery for you. We’ve already started ordering the parts.”

After a four-to-six week prediction, I got a call 10 days later; apparently the dealership had found batteries nearby? It’s not entirely clear to me how this happened so quickly, but in any case, the dealership delivered my new i3 to my workplace. Let’s take a close look at it, and then later this week, I’ll do a first test to see how much range the car has with its “new” battery.

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A Close Look At My High-Mileage BMW i3

 

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I haven’t yet had a chance to put the i3’s allegedly new battery pack to the test, but I have taken a close look at the car on the outside, inside, and underneath. Plus I’ve tested out most the fully-loaded, formerly-$50,000+ car’s features, of which there are many. Let’s see what I got for $10,500.

Exterior

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Looking at my new acquisition from the outside, it’s in decent shape! Unfortunately the dealership — which did a great job cleaning the car — didn’t fix the lower right part of the front fascia where two trim pieces have separated from one another. I had asked for that (my three asks were: 1. Check the battery health 2. Fix this bumper and 3. Fix the rattling exhaust), and it seems like such a simple job, but alas, it still needs either a new clip/plastic bracket or I need to rig something up to pull the two pieces together to fill the gap:

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There are quite a few blemishes on the outside of the car, though none of them are severe. The rear bumper features some scratches — most likely from loading things into the surprisingly spacious cargo area:

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Here’s that cargo area, by the way. It fits an Ikea shelf fairly easily:

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The black hood has some chipped paint:

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The wheels have some scuffs:

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But the worst part of my i3’s exterior can be seen on the passenger’s side rear suicide-door/coach-door. Here’s a look at the rather deep chips in the paint:

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Still, despite these chips, the passenger’s side looks good from a few feet back:

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Overall, the i3 looks awesome on the outside. Sure, there are a few scuffs and chips, but I’d give it an eight out of 10.

Interior/Interior Functions

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The BMW i3’s interior — specifically the Giga World one that I have — is a work of art. The inside is bright, it’s fun, it’s elegant, it’s made of sustainable materials (the door trim and dash are made of recycled plastic, the seats are made of wool and olive-leaf-dyed leather, the glovebox lid is made of eucalyptus wood) — it’s no wonder this interior won the “Production Interior Vehicle Design of the Year” award.

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Despite having a butt in the driver’s seat and hands around that white steering wheel for 134,000 miles, my i3’s cabin is in phenomenal shape. The seats are basically in mint condition, the leather’s color still pops, the door trim and dash look brand new — my i3’s interior is just an amazing place to spend time. The inside of this machine feels almost like a Scandinavian lounge — it’s not over-the-top swanky, but it’s thoroughly elegant and stylish.

The steering wheel does have a bit of wear:

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But overall, I’d give the cabin’s condition a nine out of 10. It’s absolutely lovely.

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Perhaps just as important as the cabin’s aesthetics is whether or not it actually, you know, works. As you can see in the YouTube video embedded towards the top of this article, the answer is yes. The heated seats work, the bluetooth works, the electronically-folding side-mirrors work, the voice control button on the steering wheel works, the automatic wipers work, the navigation works, the radio works, the automatic headlights work, the power windows and locks work, the air conditioning works — every single function on this car works flawlessly.

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Obviously, I haven’t tested the park assist or the adaptive cruise control yet, since this is a mostly static inspection (a test drive article is coming hopefully on Friday!), but it’s so far so good on the interior, which was a key reason why I bought this machine in the first place.

The Underside/Mechanicals

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Okay, so my high-mileage BMW i3 looks good from up top and inside, but what about the important bits? You know, the mechanicals. Well, we put the i3 up on a lift at Galpin Auto Sports, the ultimate car-modification shop possibly on earth, and actually managed to get some input from a BMW i3-certified technician named Ray. He’s a big fan of i3s, and having worked at a BMW dealership before, he’s seen quite a few of them, so his opinion mattered to me.

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I pointed a few obvious issues out to Ray. For example, looking at the car from the front, there’s clearly a plastic aero-shield that’s broken off at the very front of the car:

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Checking things out from the rear, I noticed that the bottom of the gasoline range extender was exposed. This seemed a bit odd to me, as typically I’d think an automaker would want to close all of this off to keep debris from entering that rear engine space and to perhaps improve aerodynamics:

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Ray seemed to think that a cover was missing as well, but every photo that I’ve seen of a BMW i3 underside shows no cover, so it looks like all I’ll have to do is swap out that front one, which costs $56.10 directly from BMW:

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Annoyingly, while I was at the rear of the car, I wiggled the exhaust and found that the dealer had not done anything about that rattle.

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Ray broke out his pen light, and quickly found the issue: A rubber exhaust hanger had failed:

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I should be able to take car of this in a few minutes for no more than about $20 for the new hanger. But what could be a little pricier is the front suspension:

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Overall, the suspension looks great. The aluminum control arms look new, and the bushings aren’t even cracked. But Ray did find some issues with my front struts. To me, the most obvious issue is the rubber dust boot, which has basically disintegrated and turned into what looks like a licorice Twizzler

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But Ray noted that the real issue is the spring mounts, or “toppers,” which have apparently torn. This aligns with the fact that I’ve been hearing this odd squeaking noise when turning the wheel at low speeds:

I also managed to find a technical service bulletin from BMW that seems to describe my steering noise issue; indeed, the front spring assembly will likely need to be swapped out:

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It looks like I can snag some nice front Bilsteins from our friends at FCP Euro for just $139 a pop, while the rears are $106.

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Otherwise, my high-mileage i3 looked decent from underneath. “Pretty solid for 135,000 miles,” Ray told me.

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While the car was on the lift, I took a look at the wheels and tires. The 19-inch wheels have a few scuffs on them, but they look decent. More importantly, the tires look almost brand new, with a date code of spring of 2022. This is a big deal, as a new set of tires for an i3 costs $1,000, as there are very few options given how tall and skinny the vehicle’s specialty tires are.

Was This The Deal Of The Century?

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So that was a first look at my new 2014 BMW i3. The fact that I bought the cheapest i3 ReX in the country, and it has an interior that’s in almost mint condition, an exterior that is a decent eight out of 10, only a few mechanical issues, and essentially brand new tires is just awesome. On top of that, the dealer shipped me a brand new charging cable — ~$350 of value! Check it out:

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So things are looking good. But the real test of whether this was the Deal Of The Century comes next: I have to see if that’s actually a new battery. The change-up from an estimated four to six weeks of downtime to just 10 days has me a little concerned. Keep an eye on The Autopian for a first-drive review, with an initial range test. Then next week I’m going to do a maximum-range test to see how many miles I can squeeze out of this weird little carbon fiber electric BMW.

Relatedbar

I Bought A High-Mileage Electric Car With A Bad Battery. Here’s Why That Was Actually A Stroke of Genius

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Why I Bought My Currently-Broken BMW i3: LA Was Making Me Fall Out Of Love With My Old Cars

I Rented A BMW i3 For A Weekend And Now I’m Sitting In A Cheap Motel Two Hours From Home Contemplating Buying The Cheapest One I Could Find

My BMW i3 Depreciated $43,000 In Just Nine Years. The Luxury Features I Got For $10,500 Are Incredible

 

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LongCoolLincoln
LongCoolLincoln
1 year ago

So what I’m not seeing, and I’m only picking this nit because I’d kind of love to try this myself, is where it says what defines a battery that they’re willing to replace. I see the warranty period, but what’s to stop them from saying well, you’re getting 30 miles out of it, it still works fine, we’re not going to replace it?

Cryptoenologist
Cryptoenologist
1 year ago

In the previous article I think it said 70% or 80% was the threshold, can’t remember which.

LongCoolLincoln
LongCoolLincoln
1 year ago

Ah yeah, he does say that “The dealer must have determined that the battery capacity was at lower than BMW’s 70 percent threshold needed to qualify for the warranty.”

Ben
Ben
1 year ago

Deal of the century? Eh. You got a fairly undesirable (based on sales numbers) short-range EV with a barely usable range extender (based on the comments from owners on your other articles) for a big discount over new. With the free new battery (assuming it is new) it’s a pretty good deal, but I’m confident someone in the next 100 years will be able to do better.

That said, unless there are nasty gremlins hiding in the car it seems like a sensible purchase for someone who runs a car site, for all the reasons you listed here. Wait, sensible…David Tracy…if you hadn’t just run that article about the Jeep spare tire rack I’d think the real David was lost in Moab somewhere and this was being ghost written by an impostor. 😛

Brian Ash
Brian Ash
1 year ago
Reply to  Ben

250,000 i3’s sold worldwide, not undesirable considering. #3 is EV sales from 2014-16, which seems ages ago.

Ben
Ben
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

Were there more than 3 EVs being sold outside California from 2014-16? I assume that means it was being outsold by the Model S and the Leaf, which I guess is fair since one of those was actually popular and the other was cheaper, but basically everything else was a compliance car. They were in third place out of three. 😛

Pappa P
Pappa P
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

Yes, and 25 of those sold in North America, making it a solid #3 out of the 3 EVs available for sale in 2014 lol

Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
1 year ago
Reply to  Ben

It’s funny how none of the writers here seems to like nice cars that run. Maybe fancy Kristen should come and balance out the Tracy/streeter/gossin/torch/rob shitbox brigade.

Vic Vinegar
Vic Vinegar
1 year ago

Doesn’t Kristen have a 17-18 year old Mercedes C55? I mean its not a 70’s Jeep, or a derelict Chrysler K-car product from the 90’s, but its not a brand new car either.

Ben
Ben
1 year ago

I have been begging Fancy Kristen to come to the Autopian, but she won’t return my calls, texts, or the sky-writing I did over her mansion in [redacted].

Charlie Hartman
Charlie Hartman
1 year ago

After owning an e12, e30, and e34, I haven’t been following BMW for at least a decade, and had little interest in buying another one. These articles however put the i3 on my radar as a potentially interesting solution for our second car. My wife was not as keen though on a used car with limited range and weird tires (and it would be mostly her commuter car, so what she wanted is what mattered).

Then Kevin Williams posted an article about the continuing existence of local auto shows. The new Prius was top of our list, and we went to the show to see one in person before putting in the work to get one. The car that caught our attention thought was the BMW i4. We saw it online previously and dismissed it, but seeing it in person (and sitting in it) changed our opinion – the styling actually works (the iX is still ugly). Then we learned about the lease loophole.

So thanks in no small part to this site, we leased an i4 eDrive35 off the lot a few weeks later, and couldn’t be happier with that decision. Most new Priuses were a long wait, any available soon had “market adjustments” on top of MSRP, and on top of that most dealers offered pretty lousy interest rates to finance. BMW on the other hand effectively took $7500 off the top. If we buy the i4 in three years our down payment + monthly payments + residual will end up costing about what a well-equipped Prius would have, for a much nicer full EV. And unlike my last Toyota, the dealer was an absolute pleasure to work with at every step.

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 year ago

Get the lowering springs for it.

EVDesigner
EVDesigner
1 year ago

As someone who lives in Socal I recommend not getting lowering springs. For some odd reason every single parking lot entrance is 2 feet tall and you’re guaranteed to scrape your front bumper at least once a month.

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 year ago
Reply to  EVDesigner
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
1 year ago

He already has one

Vicente Perez
Vicente Perez
1 year ago

Fantastic article! About the battery, they likely found a refurbished one in the US. Not shady or unusual, many manufacturers replace faulty batteries with refurbished ones unless there is a recall. But still worth testing, of course.

Lastly and completely unrelated. If you have not tried the SOS button by the rearview mirror, please do. Don’t worry, you won’t be calling anybody. It works in a totally unexpected way and, in my opinion, it is one of the most delightfully corky features of the car.

Last edited 1 year ago by Vicente Perez
Ben
Ben
1 year ago
Reply to  Vicente Perez

Remember kids, when it comes to EV batteries “refurbished” really means “old”, unless the seller can prove otherwise (I’m sure there are 1 year old refurbs out there, but they probably command a price premium). I don’t disagree that they may have used a refurbished battery here, but if you’re going to put a refurb battery in your car you need to understand what you’re signing up for. If the battery has a 10 year lifespan and you put a 5 year old “refurbished” battery in, don’t count on more than 5 years of usable life and factor that into your price comparisons.

Hopefully David actually got a new one because otherwise this deal could get very expensive in a few years.

Brian Ash
Brian Ash
1 year ago
Reply to  Vicente Perez

Doubt his SOS button works, his was based on 3g which was discontinued and unlikely retrofitted with new tech.

Vicente Perez
Vicente Perez
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

Correct, the SOS feature does not work. But the way the button itself operates, that’s what is endlessly amusing. I have not seen what other BMWs do, but the i3 makes it feel like you are suddenly James Bond about to eject the passenger seat.

Last edited 1 year ago by Vicente Perez
Brian Ash
Brian Ash
1 year ago
Reply to  Vicente Perez

Gotcha, press what you think is a button and its actually a cover that pops open with the real button underneath.

Vicente Perez
Vicente Perez
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

Yep! And a button that looks straight from a Soviet submarine at that 😀

Last edited 1 year ago by Vicente Perez
Bob Tenney
Bob Tenney
1 year ago

I wonder if the dealership was trying to find a customer like you- someone who would be happy find out a way to have BMW pay for the new battery instead of leaving them stuck with the bill.

TXJeepGuy
TXJeepGuy
1 year ago
Reply to  Bob Tenney

Had the dealer realized the battery was under warranty they would have done the replacement already; BMW would pay for it either way.

More likely is they’re kicking themselves for not catching that, fixing it, and listing the car for significantly more.

Rabob Rabob
Rabob Rabob
1 year ago
Reply to  TXJeepGuy

They sold a car with 30 mile range for 11k. I’d be popping champagne. That’s like unacceptable range for a Walmart ebike.

Sklooner
Sklooner
1 year ago

Check the dumpster behind the BMW dealer for empty AA battery packages

05LGT
05LGT
1 year ago

Awesome score.

Andrew Wyman
Andrew Wyman
1 year ago

@David, Quick note for the video. Note sure if you guys care, but the number for Jason was showing, and sometimes people can be jerks with that kind of information.

The video was awesome! I love the little details all throughout the i3! Your joy reminds me of the first time I drove my Volt, and was finding the fun little details that come with PHEV’s. Make sure to do a 0-60 run just for fun!

Dug Deep
Dug Deep
1 year ago

I know your history. You absolutely deserve this to be the deal of the century.

B L
B L
1 year ago

Ridiculous that the dealer wouldn’t do a battery test until you bought the car (this is like refusing to start the engine until you agreed to buy a car!), but since they also refused to do two tiny, easy fixes that you specifically requested, it’s par for the course.

I’d worry that they might not even have actually replaced the batteries, or that they swapped in some used ones lol.

Crank Shaft
Crank Shaft
1 year ago

Yes, Deal of the Century without question. Savor this grand achievement, as you may never surpass it. At least you didn’t peak in high school.

JDE
JDE
1 year ago

I am not really seeing the appeal of the interior personally, it looks like any other basic car from this century with the exception of the tacked on tablets with an angle to catch sunray versus a properly hooded and integrated set up. but still that seems to be the way cars are cheapening up to stay afloat or maybe we are just following Emperor Elon and his new clothes. Shame on the Dealer for being so shady though.

3WiperB
3WiperB
1 year ago

If you are worried about the new battery, you can check the battery state of health of the new battery using the secret menu (accessed by holding the button on the side of the instrument screen and entering the sum of the last 5 digits of your VIN as the password). There’s some YouTube videos out there about this.

I went to look at a 2019 I3 REX a few weeks ago and it had been sold, but I ended up with a 330e. I’d blame you a bit for putting the I3 back on my radar, but I have no regrets about the 330e. It fits our very short commutes fine with it’s 20 mile electric range. I did really like the I3 though. I’m pretty impressed with the BMW EV’s and PHEV’s. My 2014 Volt was an amazing car, but so are these electrified BMW’s. I think they kind of fly under the radar of most people, myself included.

You certainly got a deal.

3WiperB
3WiperB
1 year ago
Reply to  3WiperB

Here’s a video on that menu and how to access it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_Hj9u1j7Rw

I haven’t tried this on my 330e yet to see if it has the same menu if I hold the BC button, but I suspect it does.

Idiot_with_a_garage
Idiot_with_a_garage
1 year ago

If you ever want to do a comparison with an e-Golf I know a guy… It is going to be interesting to see how these early EV’s age now that they have gone through an owner or two. My only issue has been a sticky charger locking solenoid, but frequent applications of PB silicone spray have resolved the issue.

P Hans
P Hans
1 year ago

Hey David, can you help me find another i3 like this?

It'll buff out
It'll buff out
1 year ago
Reply to  David Tracy

Sold new in California, that has less than 70% of it’s original range left. Yes, please.

Dar Khorse
Dar Khorse
1 year ago

Oh boy – I’m so excited for you, David! I just hope the dealer actually replaced the battery since they ignored all the other identified issues. :-/ But you’re going to have so much fun with this little thing. It’s a decent 10-footer from the outside and legitimately gorgeous on the inside. Looking forward to the first-drive report and many future adventures with your e-Bimmer.

ADDvanced
ADDvanced
1 year ago

Yeah that interior is not an 8/10 imho. That requires probably $1000+ in paintwork to fix all those massive chips, that are down to bare metal, not to mention the lower bumper area that isn’t attached. That’s a solid 5 or 6/10 imho. 8/10 would be clean with maybe some swirl marks, 9 is almost perfection, and 10 is like…. museum quality perfection.

Looking forward to your story after wrenching on this and replacing the struts; I have a feeling your mind is going to be blown how easily every fastener comes off from the thing compared to what you’re used to doing.

Last edited 1 year ago by ADDvanced
Amberturnsignalsarebetter
Amberturnsignalsarebetter
1 year ago
Reply to  David Tracy

I would rate that exterior as pretty decent for a 100k+ car, especially in CA.

The question is how long will it be before that chipped plastic bodywork starts to rust?

Ordinarily I wouldn’t expect this to be an issue, but this is a vehicle now owned by the lord of ferrous oxide.

Crank Shaft
Crank Shaft
1 year ago

At his current pace in about three years he’ll only be driving brand new luxury cars while laughing maniacally at the hoi polloi.

J/K DT.

JDE
JDE
1 year ago
Reply to  David Tracy

So? it is really just a Smart car with 4 doors like it appears to be?

BeardyHat
BeardyHat
1 year ago
Reply to  David Tracy

Looks pretty damn good to me, I’d say.

My 2013 Fit is similarly banged-up and unfortunately, that’s just the world we live in. Cars are meant to get dinged and dented; careless coworkers, road debris, using a car for its intended purpose, it happens. Looks just fine to me and with all the dings, dents and scratches, it means you don’t need to worry about it.

To me, the most important question is: Does it still work and drive as it’s supposed to? If yes, then all is right with the world; who cares what it looks like?

It'll buff out
It'll buff out
1 year ago
Reply to  David Tracy

For a 135,000 mile commuter car on SoCal highways, that thing looks good!

Fix the bumper clip, give it a good coat of wax, and display your “earned patina” rock chips with pride…and enjoy not buying gas to get back and forth to work. (You will really grow to love that part). BTW I’m hoping you can charge this thing at home….

Turbeaux
Turbeaux
1 year ago
Reply to  ADDvanced

You gotta use the Tracy Scale. Moderate rust is about a 5/10. You’d have to be nuts to spend $1000 fixing paint chips on a car that will spend it’s time on busy highways. Cover the chips with some touch-up paint and call it 10/10.

Last edited 1 year ago by Turbeaux
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
1 year ago
Reply to  Turbeaux

Holes in the floor and rockers that turned into orange dust 10 years ago? 4/10, VG+ condition

Last edited 1 year ago by Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
Man With A Reliable Jeep
Man With A Reliable Jeep
1 year ago

I can’t stand it when a dealer blatantly overlooks their signed “will dos.” If it happens, I always hold their feet to the fire and make them “have dones.”

Michael Beranek
Michael Beranek
1 year ago

I was thinking that the exhaust and air dam issues got lost in the shuffle once it became a battery replacement under warranty.

TXJeepGuy
TXJeepGuy
1 year ago

I’m curious if they were listed on the “We Owes” form

Danny Zabolotny
Danny Zabolotny
1 year ago

Looks to be in pretty good shape for a BMW with 135k miles. Usually they need struts/mounts and some suspension work around 100k miles anyways, that’s not uncommon.

After a four-to-six week prediction, I got a call 10 days later; apparently the dealership had found batteries nearby?”

Sometimes when you order things, the system will find parts that are in stock in the US, whether it was from a return or just a canceled work order at a dealership. I just recently placed a decently large order of parts from my local dealer for a Euro-spec E36 M3 (with the Euro S50B32 engine) and I was surprised to find that a lot of the parts were already in the US, just scattered amongst several dealerships around the country.

Richard O
Richard O
1 year ago

I also doubt it’s a used/refurbished pack. BMW’s parts system is very good. I doubt it would have come from Germany in that time frame as I think the battery pack would have to come by ship. But as you said, it was probably sitting in one of the warehouses or at a dealer.

Torque
Torque
1 year ago

While I know a plug-in hybrid like a plug in prius is a better cheap commuter…

Darn it the i3 Rex is one hell of an interesting little commuter that will Definitely be a better subject for more…

“You’ll never guess whats broken now on my aluminum & carbon fiber bmw…!?!” articles

A. Barth
A. Barth
1 year ago

Overall that looks like an excellent little car! The interior really is nice.

You can probably find an aftermarket panel to protect the top of the rear bumper and to cover the existing scratches. Pair that with a carbon fiber wrap on the hood and you’ll be set. 🙂

Looking forward to the road (and range) test!

Torque
Torque
1 year ago

So you gave the selling dealership 3 specific asks, 2 of which were super tiny asks at that & they couldn’t be bothered…

Fingers crossed they actually installed a good HV battery, even if it was NOS sitting somewhere several years on a shelf!

MikeInTheWoods
MikeInTheWoods
1 year ago
Reply to  Torque

Exactly this. A shelf stored battrery will not be as fresh as newly built one. Also, I bet the warranty terms state they have to replace the battery with one that passes the minimum test. Probably not much warranty on the replacement one either.
I just went through this with my Kia EV. We had to wait months since they build fresh packs to order.

A. Barth
A. Barth
1 year ago
Reply to  Torque

Genuine ChangLi quality! 😀

Man With A Reliable Jeep
Man With A Reliable Jeep
1 year ago
Reply to  Torque

/David opens battery compartment, finds a string of used ChangLi batteries installed

Amberturnsignalsarebetter
Amberturnsignalsarebetter
1 year ago

And at least one of them still has chainsaw marks on the duct-taped enclosure…

Turbeaux
Turbeaux
1 year ago

Are we sure Torch didn’t turn those into boat anchors?

Man With A Reliable Jeep
Man With A Reliable Jeep
1 year ago
Reply to  Turbeaux

*slaps roof of ocean* “This bad boy can hold so many boat anchors!”

Fix It Again Tony
Fix It Again Tony
1 year ago
Reply to  Torque

I know DT has never set foot in a dealership before but he should’ve gotten a due bill for the fixes he requested instead of verbal confirmation so they can’t skip out on him.

JurassicComanche25
JurassicComanche25
1 year ago

So, planned modifications? I wonder what smaller, lighter wheels would do.

Goof
Goof
1 year ago

Moab is only 6 months away. Plenty of time to prepare the i3 for it!

Lightning
Lightning
1 year ago
Reply to  Goof

It has really short front and rear overhangs, like Mercedes’ Gambler 500 Smart. Might do better than expected.

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