The BMW i3 arrives in the US

The BMW i3 arrives in the US

After the initial launch of the carbon fibre electric i3 on the European market, German luxury car manufacturer BMW has now delivered the first i3 in the US. The first owner of the BMW 'green' model is Tufts University professor of practice Charles Rabie. Mr Rabie has been driving a BMW ActiveE for the last two years.

Among other recipients of one of the first batch of i3 deliveries is Ashlan Gorse Cousteau. She is the wife of Philippe Cousteau, who is the grandson of film maker and environmentalist Jacques Cousteau.

Chief executive officer and president of BMW North America, Ludwig Willisch, said: "Today marks a big day at BMW of North America - what started out as a dream for an innovative sustainable vehicle under the BMW i brand can now be found on streets across the US".

The basic entry level model is now on sale in the US for $41,350 (just over £24,500); upgrading with the range extender increases the price to $45,200 (just over £26,800). The range extended i3 comes with a 647cc two-cylinder 25kW engine.

The i3 comes with a 22kWh lithium-ion battery; if driven in all-electric drive-mode this has a range of 81 miles (130km)

The US is a huge market and BMW will be hoping that the success of the i3 in Europe can be mirrored here; if it is, the company can look forward to a large number of sales.