wlsmith12
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 8:49 pm
Location: Chicago IL USA

IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Sun Jan 17, 2016 8:54 pm

I live in Chicago and I am thinking of buying a used 2014-15 I3 rex. How is the cabin heater (weak or very good) and how much does the real cold days affect you -15 below. I do not have a garage but have a 220 outlet. Also the dealer is trying to tell me the rex engine has changed from 2014-2015? He is saying the 2015 has a higher output?

alohart
Posts: 931
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Sun Jan 17, 2016 10:48 pm

Living in Honolulu, I have never used the heater in our i3 BEV. Others will certainly describe their experience with the cabin heater. I do know that both the BEV and REx versions have very effective optional front seat heaters and a resistance heater that heats the heat transfer fluid in the cabin heater, but that only the BEV uses its heat pump to heat the heat transfer fluid unless outside temperatures are so cold that it is ineffective whereupon the resistance heater is turned on. In the REx version, the resistance heater is always used which reduces the driving range more significantly than the BEV's heat pump. But with the REx engine, reduced electric range isn't a problem. The cabin in all i3's can be preconditioned before one departs, so one needn't enter a cold cabin. When charging, the battery pack can be preconditioned as well which reduces the range lost due to a cold battery pack assuming one's i3 has the seat heater option.

Your dealer is absolutely incorrect when he states that the output of the 2105 REx engine is greater than that of the 2014 version. I'm guessing that he is lying trying to persuade you to purchase a 2015 model. There has been no change in REx engine output since the i3 REx was introduced. Being in Chicago, you must have other BMW dealers available. I suggest doing business with a more honest dealer.
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

jadnashuanh
Posts: 3453
Joined: Thu May 22, 2014 2:07 pm
Location: Nashua, NH USA

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Sun Jan 17, 2016 11:29 pm

The latest software MIGHT let the REx run faster, and longer, but the engine itself is the same and installing new software essentially keeps them all the same. I do not have any facts on if the s/w updates addressed this, but they could. Dealer is blowing smoke...
Jim DeBruycker
2011 535i x-drive GT, 2014 i3 BEV

jhu321
Posts: 36
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2015 1:54 pm

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 9:46 am

wlsmith12 wrote:I live in Chicago and I am thinking of buying a used 2014-15 I3 rex. How is the cabin heater (weak or very good) and how much does the real cold days affect you -15 below. I do not have a garage but have a 220 outlet. Also the dealer is trying to tell me the rex engine has changed from 2014-2015? He is saying the 2015 has a higher output?



i've had my i3 in chicago since may... during the summer i consistently get 70 miles on a single charge (my commute from downtown to schaumburg and back is about 70 miles) I'd have enough to make it home w/o the rex kicking in. unfortunately in the winter not so much... right now my Guess-O-Meter starts off at 49 miles but i think i'm really only getting low 40s on a full charge with the heater all the way. I had to install a charger @ my office to allow me to make the commute both ways.

the heater is actually nice and strong, it doesn't have to wait for the car to warm up like an ICE so its on as soon as you ask it to turn on, with the pre-conditioning while plugged in, it makes a huge difference walking into a nice and warm car too.

the 2015 rex has not changed and your dealer is wrong.... most dealers that i worked with had very limited knowledge of the i3... from what i could figure out, they took their worse sales guy / least busy and sent them to the training to check the quota set by bmw. do not believe anything they say and do your research.

with the 220 plug you have, which plug style is it? is it 6-20 6-50 or 14-50? the plug style will let you know how much current you have access to in order to charge.

wlsmith12
Posts: 12
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 8:49 pm
Location: Chicago IL USA

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 9:58 am

jhu321 wrote:
wlsmith12 wrote:I live in Chicago and I am thinking of buying a used 2014-15 I3 rex. How is the cabin heater (weak or very good) and how much does the real cold days affect you -15 below. I do not have a garage but have a 220 outlet. Also the dealer is trying to tell me the rex engine has changed from 2014-2015? He is saying the 2015 has a higher output?



i've had my i3 in chicago since may... during the summer i consistently get 70 miles on a single charge (my commute from downtown to schaumburg and back is about 70 miles) I'd have enough to make it home w/o the rex kicking in. unfortunately in the winter not so much... right now my Guess-O-Meter starts off at 49 miles but i think i'm really only getting low 40s on a full charge with the heater all the way. I had to install a charger @ my office to allow me to make the commute both ways.

the heater is actually nice and strong, it doesn't have to wait for the car to warm up like an ICE so its on as soon as you ask it to turn on, with the pre-conditioning while plugged in, it makes a huge difference walking into a nice and warm car too.

the 2015 rex has not changed and your dealer is wrong.... most dealers that i worked with had very limited knowledge of the i3... from what i could figure out, they took their worse sales guy / least busy and sent them to the training to check the quota set by bmw. do not believe anything they say and do your research.

with the 220 plug you have, which plug style is it? is it 6-20 6-50 or 14-50? the plug style will let you know how much current you have access to in order to charge.



jhu321 thank you for the info. I have L6-20 on the outside in the parking area. I have one more question and this is about the tires have you had any issues? I hear a lot of people getting flat tires and you know our pothole streets in Chicago. Thank you again.

alohart
Posts: 931
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 11:59 am

wlsmith12 wrote:I have L6-20 on the outside in the parking area.

This is what we have but with only 208 rather than 240 v. However, we never have to precondition our battery pack or cabin, so charging at a maximum of 16 amps (3.3 kW for me, 3.8 kW if you have 240 v) allows us to charge from empty to full overnight. Preconditioning in the coldest weather can consume quite a bit of power. Before battery pack preconditioning starts (3 hours prior to your departure time), 3.8 kW would charge ~15% SoC/hour up to ~90% SoC where charging slows. But in the final 3 hours prior to departure, on the coldest days, 3.8 kW might not be sufficient to both precondition and charge. Someone with experience in cold weather will hopefully comment. However, with a REx, even if you depart with less than 100% SoC, you'd be fine.
Aloha,
Art

2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging, JuiceBox EVSE

jadnashuanh
Posts: 3453
Joined: Thu May 22, 2014 2:07 pm
Location: Nashua, NH USA

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 12:55 pm

During a preconditioning, I have seen my EVSE peak at 20A, so a 20A circuit would be about tapped out. But, you'd probably be fully recharged once that started, and it wouldn't be an issue.
Jim DeBruycker
2011 535i x-drive GT, 2014 i3 BEV

jhu321
Posts: 36
Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2015 1:54 pm

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 1:31 pm

jhu321 thank you for the info. I have L6-20 on the outside in the parking area. I have one more question and this is about the tires have you had any issues? I hear a lot of people getting flat tires and you know our pothole streets in Chicago. Thank you again.[/quote]


I have gotten 1 side wall bubble from hitting a pothole @ 70mph on i-90 in that construction zone. other than that, its been okay... I have the 20" summer tires so when it snows out the car is practically unusable... I switch to my x5 for those days... I have okay 10k miles and had 1 bad tire... so not terrible... I bought a replacement from tirerack for 130 bucks and paid perillo bmw to install it since it was in for other servicing. with tirerack the road hazard insurance is included so theoretically the cost to replace should that same tire get hit again would be minimal...

as for 20amp preconditioning... i actually have my evse artificially limited to 16amp right now, i'm not on a dedicated circuit and i've never had a problem where it wasn't enough to charge and pre=condition. I always start the day with a full charge if i plug it in before midnight.

jadnashuanh
Posts: 3453
Joined: Thu May 22, 2014 2:07 pm
Location: Nashua, NH USA

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 3:31 pm

While mine peaks at over 20A, the average is lower while working on preconditioning and warming the batteries. It is likely close with 16A available. When it wants that 20A, it will be pulling it from the batteries, and (hopefully) make it up when it cycles lower.
Jim DeBruycker
2011 535i x-drive GT, 2014 i3 BEV

brorob
Gold Member
Posts: 97
Joined: Sat Oct 31, 2015 5:53 am

Re: IN Chicago and I am thinking of buying

Mon Jan 18, 2016 6:55 pm

I live on the other side of the lake from you so our conditions are similar. I commute 21 miles each way and only charge at work (Level 2) during the week. It's gotten as cold as single digit temps and I have had enough range for the round trip. I'm also preconditioning before I leave work but don't in the morning since it isn't plugged in. It was 12 Fahrenheit when I drove home today and my range was showing 59 miles. This was driving in Eco Mode, seat warmer on setting 1, defrost running speed 3, and of course the 12 speaker HK system cranked! I would drive the car in Eco with just the seat warmer but the windows seem to always fog up in the car so I'm constantly running the defrost so I can see. My only complaint about the car. Haven't had a problem with a cold cabin when heater or defrost is running.

Tip on the preconditioning as others will verify, make sure it's setup as a departure time through the app or set in the car. Hitting the fan icon on the app just warms the cabin, not the battery pack. Also a Level 2 EVSE is required for the battery pack to be preconditioned, Level 1 will only warm the cabin.

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