AlanDoc
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Sep 09, 2017 8:53 am

Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:16 am

Hi,

I'm new here. I own a 2016 i3rex. I love this car and I love driving it. I've now even got over 'range anxiety.'

However I hate the fact that my first post is on a slightly negative note.

Before I bought the car the salesperson pushed in the wing panel and said "You can't dent an i3 - it just bounces back."

But my first issue was when I was forced to brake on a busy road. At the point where either my Golf or my Range Rover would have stopped -
the i3 kept going. However no problem this time.

Two months ago, in a rainstorm some body pulled out in front of me. I braked hard but the car didn't slow up in time and I hit the other car, a VW Polo.

The damage to the Polo? Some paint scuffing on the rear passenger door and a small dent on the rear wheel arch.

My i3? The entire front nearside corner burst open like tupperware. Both the front wing and the whole front assembly had to be replaced along with the lights. Luckily here was no structural damage but the bill (paid by my insurance) was £4,500.

Has anybody else felt their brakes are below par?

MikeS
Posts: 713
Joined: Thu Jan 16, 2014 8:29 am
Location: Brighton UK

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Sat Sep 09, 2017 9:20 am

On the very rare occasion I have had to use my brakes they seem fine and no different from the X1 that I also drive.
BMW 3 Series 2005 - Aug 2014
BMW Z4 35i 2009 - Mar 2014
BMW X1 Mar 14
BMW i3 Sep 14

stumbledotcom
Posts: 453
Joined: Sat Jan 18, 2014 3:35 pm
Location: San Francisco
Contact: Website

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:44 pm

Sorry to hear about your misfortune. It seems an anomaly. In the third party instrumented testing I've seen, the i3 has been better than average for small hatchbacks. Motor Trend magazine recorded 60 to 0 in 108 feet. For comparison, they got 118 feet in a 2015 Golf.

nitramluap
Posts: 102
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 12:43 am
Location: Not the USA

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Sat Sep 09, 2017 4:24 pm

Did the ABS engage? If not, you weren't braking at the limit. If it did activate then it's quite possible there was a surface traction problem (diesel on the road, etc).

I've found my car stops as well as any modern car I've owned in the past 25 years.

Also, the dealer was an idiot to suggest that 'you can't dent an i3's panels' because you surely can... just like you can dent any other car's bumper/fender - it's effectively made from the same material.

The bodywork can certainly tolerate minor dingles better than a metal body, and is less prone to chips & scratches in this manner, but if you hit it hard enough (especially with a sharp object), it's going to deform and/or take a chunk of paint with it, and you might not be able to bend it back.

If the forces are great enough, it will shatter like a normal car's bumper. You *have* seen the i3 crash test videos surely? It's not bulletproof!

eneka
Posts: 92
Joined: Thu Nov 12, 2015 1:57 pm

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Mon Sep 11, 2017 4:44 pm

I've taken my i3 to autox and definitely felt the brakes could be a tad bit better. Could be just my worn tires/skinny tires but I find ABS engages rather easily.

That being said, C&D lists the 60-0 braking distance of 108ft. Comparable to many other sports cars. (104ft for the F80 M3)
2015 i3 rEX Arravani Grey giga, parking, tech, 20"

foggy69
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun May 28, 2017 4:30 am

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:05 pm

I have not been that impressed by the brakes on my i3.
In an emergency, they seemed to lack the bite I expected. I assumed that the weight of the car and the narrow tyres are contributing factors.

nitramluap
Posts: 102
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 12:43 am
Location: Not the USA

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:12 pm

foggy69 wrote:I have not been that impressed by the brakes on my i3.
In an emergency, they seemed to lack the bite I expected. I assumed that the weight of the car and the narrow tyres are contributing factors.
Can't say I've needed to test them in an emergency... as I drive in a way that doesn't require me to.

When I received the car I did do a 'maximal braking test' on a closed road to get a feel for them. Seemed normal to me and the real data on the i3 suggests the same. The narrower tyres with a larger diameter result in a contact patch that is on par with the average entry level 3er, and the car is lighter... so I'm not sure what you're doing wrong.

jadnashuanh
Posts: 5196
Joined: Thu May 22, 2014 2:07 pm
Location: Nashua, NH USA

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Wed Sep 13, 2017 7:17 pm

IF ABS engages, your total braking distance can get huge. But, there are numerous reasons that might happen. As discussed, crud on the road that could include the diesel mentioned, but also oil, water, sand, gravel, snow, ice, etc. How new the tires are also makes a difference. The rubber is constantly getting harder as it ages, which lengthens the stopping distance and diminishes the grip. As mentioned, it's not the narrow tires as the contact patch is the same, and actually should be better than a shorter, wider tire...it is oriented along the typical direction of travel verses across it. But, if there's crud on the road, in that narrower path, length doesn't help.

Personally, I've found the braking response to be quite good. Some people drive with two feet, and it's my opinion that most people end up riding the brake at least part of the time when they do that...it's REALLY hard to hover over that pedal long-term. This can overheat things, and can glaze the rotors, which can also affect the braking distance and the longevity of the pads and rotors.
Jim DeBruycker
2014 i3 BEV, 2021 X5 45e
(The i3 will be sold soon, <17K-miles, interested?)

foggy69
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun May 28, 2017 4:30 am

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Sun Sep 24, 2017 4:39 am

nitramluap wrote:
foggy69 wrote:I have not been that impressed by the brakes on my i3.
In an emergency, they seemed to lack the bite I expected. I assumed that the weight of the car and the narrow tyres are contributing factors.
Can't say I've needed to test them in an emergency... as I drive in a way that doesn't require me to.
Do you drive at 10mph everywhere then, because however good a driver you are, however much you read the road and try to anticipate other peoples actions, things sometimes happen outside of your control.
nitramluap wrote: The narrower tyres with a larger diameter result in a contact patch that is on par with the average entry level 3er, and the car is lighter... so I'm not sure what you're doing wrong.
As I said, it was an assumption about the tyre width, but the i3 Rex is over 400kg heavier than the not that much smaller Suzuki Swift Sport I had before. For a car, the i3 is very heavy. For an EV it is a bit lighter than the equivalent sized Zoe.

As for what I am doing wrong, I press the brake pedal as hard as I can when I want to stop very quickly, there is not a lot else I can do is there?

I33t
Posts: 894
Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2013 3:01 pm
Location: Australia

Re: Anybody have an brake-related accident in an i3?

Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:52 am

https://www.edmunds.com/bmw/i3/2014/roa ... specs.html
60-0 mph (ft.) 109

https://www.edmunds.com/bmw/m4/2017/coupe/review/
The M4's brake pedal is firm. The powerful (optional) carbon-ceramic brakes on our test car have excellent modulation and great stopping power. There are some groans at low speeds but that's expected. In a simulated-panic stop from 60 mph to zero, the M4 took just 106 feet, an excellent result.

So the M4 stops 3 whole feet better than the i3. !!!

Really, you might need a Ferrari or Porsche to have significant better braking than the i3.
2014 BMW i3 BEV deposit placed 19th Dec 2013
Delivered in Melbourne 4/12/2014. Arrived locally 11/12/14, with 24km on the clock.

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