oldGreyCat
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2020 6:25 pm

Advice on used i3 purchase

Fri Nov 27, 2020 7:02 pm

I am in the process of buying a 2015 BMW i3 from a used car dealer. It only has 18,000 miles, and so I assumed the battery pack would be close to full capacity. $13,000 plus a decent trade in on my 2009 Honda Fit seemed like a good deal. When the dealer had difficulty getting it charged up to deliver to me, I requested it be taken to BMW, who is now replacing one of the cells. With only 18,000 miles on it, the most likely circumstance I can think of is that the car sat for a long time without being charged and damaged the battery, which is somewhat plausible given the vehicle's history. The dealer openly admitted that he did not understand EVs well, and readily agreed to have BMW check it to protect him as well as me. No money has changed hands yet.

I would appreciate some guidance here. What should I expect from the battery after warranty replacement? When BMW replaces cells under warranty, do they restore full original capacity, or just get it barely over 70% and out of warranty range? After replacement, is it still under the original warranty period and mileage, or is it warrantied for a new 8 years/100,000 miles from the date of the replacement? Should I request that they check the 12V battery as well? What information should I request from BMW and the dealer to reassure me that all is OK? At what point should I renegotiate price, which I agreed to assuming that the battery capacity would be close to that of a new pack, and at what point should I walk away and look for another? Is it worth it for me to pay a different BMW shop to do an independent check for me? Are there other questions I should be asking?

Thanks for any help or advice you can provide!

P.S. I cross-posted this in the battery thread. These are my first posts here. I apologize if I violated a rule.

Timjohn
Posts: 61
Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:37 am

Re: Advice on used i3 purchase

Fri Nov 27, 2020 7:21 pm

Don't forget to ask about the motor mounts. Some i3 owners had failures, although small numbers, that were replaced because they broke under certain conditions that over stressed them.

The 2014 and 15 models had plastic motor mounts. Replaced the mounting screws and mounts to stronger units (aluminum mounts with later models).

oldGreyCat
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2020 6:25 pm

Re: Advice on used i3 purchase

Fri Nov 27, 2020 8:31 pm

Are there motor mounts if it's a pure EV?

alohart
Posts: 2205
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: Advice on used i3 purchase

Fri Nov 27, 2020 9:25 pm

oldGreyCat wrote:
Fri Nov 27, 2020 8:31 pm
Are there motor mounts if it's a pure EV?
All i3's have motor mounts. The motor mounts themselves aren't the problem, however. The problem is a bracket that connects the motor mount to the motor on 2014 and at least some or maybe all 2015 i3's. This bracket or a bolt that attaches this bracket can break.

A BMW service action replaced the original bolt with a stronger version. However, the original plastic composite bracket was not replaced and could break (apparently, not very common so far). When this bracket or the bolt breaks, extensive, expensive damage can occur because the A/C compressor, refrigerant lines, and motor electronics modules are attached to or are close to the motor.

Confirm that the service action that replaced the weak bolt and that updated the system software to reduce the probability of breaking the bolt or bracket has been performed.
Last edited by alohart on Sat Nov 28, 2020 10:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
Aloha,
Art

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

oldGreyCat
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2020 6:25 pm

Re: Advice on used i3 purchase

Fri Nov 27, 2020 9:56 pm

Thanks. I had thought the i3 used hub wheels and not a separate motor and transmission.

skeptic
Posts: 76
Joined: Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:31 pm

Re: Advice on used i3 purchase

Tue Dec 01, 2020 10:43 am

oldGreyCat wrote:
Fri Nov 27, 2020 9:56 pm
Thanks. I had thought the i3 used hub wheels and not a separate motor and transmission.
I could be wrong but I don't think any company has hub centric electric motors in production yet. The new Lordstown truck coming out soon will have hub motors. <offtopic> Not sure if it's just a decision or a limitation on hub motors not having any gearing, but the top speed of that truck is going to be 80mph. </offtopic>

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