MarylandPaul
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat May 28, 2022 1:59 pm

Warranty Transferrable for 2014/2015?

Apologies if this was already asked/answered but my search did not find it.

Wanted to know whether the battery 8yr/100k mi warranty is transferrable to owners buying used? If it matters, I live in MD and would purchase in MD/VA/DC.

I just test drove a 2015 base and the fully charged I3 was at 45 miles and my test drive up and down the street around the dealer dropped it to 39 miles even though it couldn't have been a mile. I did have the A/C on to test it out. I walked away from the purchase because I was hoping for at least 60 miles on a full charge. If I were to gamble and purchase the I3 I wonder if I could get the battery tested for the warranty ... likely I am dreaming but I have been looking forward to get an EV as sharp looking as the I3. Very jealous of you folks! :mrgreen:
alohart
Posts: 2562
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: Warranty Transferrable for 2014/2015?

Yep, battery pack warranty goes with the vehicle, not with the owner, so it transfers to all owners.
Aloha,
Art
[Bought 25 April 2022] 2019 BMW i3 Imperial Blue Metallic, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Heat Pump, 428 Wheels
[Sold 15 June 2022] 2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging
JuiceBox EVSE
3pete
Posts: 206
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: Warranty Transferrable for 2014/2015?

MarylandPaul wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 2:15 pm Apologies if this was already asked/answered but my search did not find it.

Wanted to know whether the battery 8yr/100k mi warranty is transferrable to owners buying used? If it matters, I live in MD and would purchase in MD/VA/DC.

I just test drove a 2015 base and the fully charged I3 was at 45 miles and my test drive up and down the street around the dealer dropped it to 39 miles even though it couldn't have been a mile. I did have the A/C on to test it out. I walked away from the purchase because I was hoping for at least 60 miles on a full charge. If I were to gamble and purchase the I3 I wonder if I could get the battery tested for the warranty ... likely I am dreaming but I have been looking forward to get an EV as sharp looking as the I3. Very jealous of you folks! :mrgreen:
As a used i3 buyer myself, one of my assumptions was that the battery warranty did transfer. I've read multiple references indicating that in the US it is federally mandated that EVs have an 8year, 100k mile warranty on defects (which is why US i3s use 100k miles instead of 100km), however it is shockingly difficult to find this documented.

This article references it, https://www.findthebestcarprice.com/hyb ... %20first).

But this article from energy.gov doesn't mention the federal mandate:
https://www.energy.gov/eere/vehicles/fa ... ears100000

Additionally, a 'capacity guarantee' is not part of any required warranty as I understand it, so BMW voluntarily chose to guarantee 70% capacity.

However, their goodwill ended there because if you search around you will find all sorts of... "shenanigans" when it comes to determining whether a car is below the 70% threshold. Only BMW can definitively say whether a car is above or below the threshold that will cost them a lot of money which is suspicious to say the least.

The car you drove that indicated 45 miles of range (out of an 81EPA rating when new) might be at 45/81 = 56% capacity BUT:

1) recent drives may have been very inefficient, so the car is saying it can't go very far on a full charge because every time someone gets in they put the AC on full blast, drive it around the block, then park it so the cabin gets hot again but they never covered much distance. If you want a true estimate of the range, you'll need to drive it for 20 ish miles or more

2) It's also possible the car's battery is around 70% true capacity but the BMS is sandbagging and limiting it to something very low. People (myself included) have benefited from asking the dealer to do a capacity test which usually requires updating the software on older cars. Something in the test process, or the software update seems to do something that adds range to many vehicles.

If you have any sort of bargaining power in this deal, I would ask the dealer to do a capacity check, and provide you with a % of where the battery is at (including asking what i-step software version the car is on which will force them to tell you if it's recently updated or very old) Then, if the capacity is above 75%, I'd take it for another 20+ mile test drive and see if the real world range is closer to what you'd need.
MarylandPaul
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat May 28, 2022 1:59 pm

Re: Warranty Transferrable for 2014/2015?

Thanks alohart and 3pete for the information! 3pete thanks for the additional insight into the small range estimate.

I will add that the salesman at the Toyota dealership that test drove it with me was the actual previous owner. He was the 3rd owner of the vehicle and when I showed surprise about the range he didn't try to persuade me otherwise. It may be that the BMS theory is likely what's at play here. If I do purchase an I3 I will invest in a battery test and hope for the same outcome as you had but in my read of multiple posts, it sounds like the dealership has the choice to honor the warranty or not by manipulating numbers. Since the seller is a Toyota dealership, I don't think I can ask for a capacity check.

Again thanks and I will have to think on it some.
alohart
Posts: 2562
Joined: Sat Nov 01, 2014 7:36 pm
Location: Honolulu, HI

Re: Warranty Transferrable for 2014/2015?

3pete wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:40 pmAs a used i3 buyer myself, one of my assumptions was that the battery warranty did transfer. I've read multiple references indicating that in the US it is federally mandated that EVs have an 8year, 100k mile warranty on defects (which is why US i3s use 100k miles instead of 100km), however it is shockingly difficult to find this documented.
Download a copy of the warranty manual for your U.S. i3 from this BMW USA Web page. For states other than CA, in the 2014 Warranty Manual:
BMW of North America, LLC (“BMW NA”) warrants the Lithium-ion high-voltage battery assembly against defects in materials or workmanship for a period of 8 years/ 100,000 miles, whichever occurs first.
There is also a CA section that describes the 10 yr/150,000 mi CA warranty.
3pete wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:40 pmAdditionally, a 'capacity guarantee' is not part of any required warranty as I understand it, so BMW voluntarily chose to guarantee 70% capacity.
Also in this Warranty Manual:
The Lithium-ion high-voltage battery modules are covered against excessive capacity loss for a period of 8 years/100,000 miles, whichever occurs first. This coverage is in addition to the Lithium-ion high voltage battery’s limited warranty for defects in materials or workmanship.

Due to its inherent technical design, the Lithium-ion high voltage battery’s capacity will decrease over time and with use. If an authorized BMW center’s capacity check concludes that the net battery capacity is less than 70 percent of its original nominal value when it was new, this level of capacity loss is considered excessive.
3pete wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:40 pmPeople (myself included) have benefited from asking the dealer to do a capacity test which usually requires updating the software on older cars. Something in the test process, or the software update seems to do something that adds range to many vehicles.
A certified BMW i mechanic posted in the Worldwide BMW i3 Facebook group that a prerequisite for the capacity test is an integration level of at least I001-18-11-xxx. The integration level of our 2014 i3 is I001-18-11-520 which, if what the BMW mechanic wrote is true, shouldn't have to be updated to perform a capacity test. However, our BMW dealer told me that a system software update was required for the capacity test which would make the test cost ~$460! I haven't argued with our dealer about this, but I would if I wanted a capacity test performed.

An unnecessary system software update would be another way for a dealer to make money, and it might temporarily increase the usable capacity enough for the capacity test to pass. Lots of potential shenanigans are possible…
Aloha,
Art
[Bought 25 April 2022] 2019 BMW i3 Imperial Blue Metallic, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Heat Pump, 428 Wheels
[Sold 15 June 2022] 2014 BMW i3 Arravani Grey, Giga World, Tech + Driving Assist, Parking Assist, DC Fast Charging
JuiceBox EVSE
3pete
Posts: 206
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2019 9:03 pm

Re: Warranty Transferrable for 2014/2015?

alohart wrote: Sun May 29, 2022 11:47 am
3pete wrote: Sat May 28, 2022 4:40 pmAs a used i3 buyer myself, one of my assumptions was that the battery warranty did transfer. I've read multiple references indicating that in the US it is federally mandated that EVs have an 8year, 100k mile warranty on defects (which is why US i3s use 100k miles instead of 100km), however it is shockingly difficult to find this documented.
Download a copy of the warranty manual for your U.S. i3 from this BMW USA Web page.
Thanks for the link. I have the book that came with the car already but downloaded the electronic copy for convenience.

The piece I was finding "shockingly difficult to find documented" is that the 8yr/100k mile is federally mandated, not just up to manufacturers to decide. Anyone can say what they want about the government, but documentation isn't usually their weak point.
alohart wrote: Sun May 29, 2022 11:47 am The integration level of our 2014 i3 is I001-18-11-520 which, if what the BMW mechanic wrote is true, shouldn't have to be updated to perform a capacity test. However, our BMW dealer told me that a system software update was required for the capacity test which would make the test cost ~$460! I haven't argued with our dealer about this, but I would if I wanted a capacity test performed.
Yeah... there-in is the rub! It's ridiculous you'd have to argue this point with them!!!

On a more humorous note, I remember reading an article by automotive journalist Peter Egan a while ago where he said anytime he went into a dealership to look at a new car, he just played dumb to make the interaction with the salesperson more genial since he tended to know more about the car he was looking at than the salesperson. I don't always employ this strategy but do find it useful sometimes, and this scenario might be one:

"battery too small, car no go far."
"We need to do a firmware update for the BMS to do the capacity test, it's going to be $500"
"battery too small, car no go far."
"We need to do a firmwa--... ah, forget it. We'll call you with the result."

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