Despite the strides made by hybrids and all-electric cars or EVs in the past 14 years, the American road is still dominated by SUVs, which waste gasoline and pollute the air. How many times have you seen only a driver in one of these monstrosities?


By VICTOR E. SASSON
EDITOR

Call it the "game changer" or the "sweet spot."

An affordable all-electric car could finally pose a challenge to the dominance of the infernal combustion engine, one of the chief causes of climate change.

But two things would have to happen:

The car would have to start at $40,000 and offer a minimum range of 200 miles.

I'm flexible, though, after looking at the BMW i3, which the German automaker says has a real-world range of 80-100 miles or 160-180 miles with a "Range Extender," a 2-cylinder gasoline engine that recharges the battery.




The base model of the BMW i3, called Mega World, has an MSRP of $42,500.


Even without the Range Extender, the BMWi3 equals or exceeds the range of two cheaper all-electric cars, the Nissan Leaf (84 miles) and Ford Focus Electric (76 miles).

The B Class Electric Drive from Mercedes-Benz has a range of up to 85 miles and an MSRP of $33,950, according to the company's Web site.

The B Class was developed in partnership with California-based Tesla Motors, which makes the car's electric drive system.

Tesla also helped develop Toyota's RAV4 EV, which has a range of 100 miles, but that vehicle is available only in California.

Park Avenue BMW in Maywood has offered me an extended test drive of the i3.


A smaller Tesla

A friend who visited the Tesla showroom in Paramus says she was told a smaller model of the revolutionary all-electric car will be coming out in a year or two.

Would a smaller car have a smaller battery and less range than the Model S with a 60 kWh battery, an advertised range of 208 miles and an MSRP of $69,900?

Tesla is building its own battery factory in Nevada, and that is expected to lower retail costs.

Could Tesla actually produce a smaller all-electric vehicle starting at $40,000?


The Tesla badge on a Model S.


Everyone now: What would an 'affordable' all-electric car look like and cost?

Despite the strides made by hybrids and all-electric cars or EVs in the past 14 years, the American road is still dominated by SUVs, which waste gasoline and pollute the air. How many times have you seen only a driver in one of these monstrosities?


By VICTOR E. SASSON
EDITOR

Call it the "game changer" or the "sweet spot."

An affordable all-electric car could finally pose a challenge to the dominance of the infernal combustion engine, one of the chief causes of climate change.

But two things would have to happen:

The car would have to start at $40,000 and offer a minimum range of 200 miles.

I'm flexible, though, after looking at the BMW i3, which the German automaker says has a real-world range of 80-100 miles or 160-180 miles with a "Range Extender," a 2-cylinder gasoline engine that recharges the battery.




The base model of the BMW i3, called Mega World, has an MSRP of $42,500.


Even without the Range Extender, the BMWi3 equals or exceeds the range of two cheaper all-electric cars, the Nissan Leaf (84 miles) and Ford Focus Electric (76 miles).

The B Class Electric Drive from Mercedes-Benz has a range of up to 85 miles and an MSRP of $33,950, according to the company's Web site.

The B Class was developed in partnership with California-based Tesla Motors, which makes the car's electric drive system.

Tesla also helped develop Toyota's RAV4 EV, which has a range of 100 miles, but that vehicle is available only in California.

Park Avenue BMW in Maywood has offered me an extended test drive of the i3.


A smaller Tesla

A friend who visited the Tesla showroom in Paramus says she was told a smaller model of the revolutionary all-electric car will be coming out in a year or two.

Would a smaller car have a smaller battery and less range than the Model S with a 60 kWh battery, an advertised range of 208 miles and an MSRP of $69,900?

Tesla is building its own battery factory in Nevada, and that is expected to lower retail costs.

Could Tesla actually produce a smaller all-electric vehicle starting at $40,000?


The Tesla badge on a Model S.


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