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Tesla Model S vs. BMW i3

When comparing the Tesla Model S to the BMW i3, the Tesla Model S has the advantage in the areas of interior volume, overall quality score and base engine power. The BMW i3 has the advantage in the area of typical lower range of pricing for one- to five-year-old used cars. Based on this comparison of the Tesla Model S versus the BMW i3, the Tesla Model S is a better car than the BMW i3.

Tesla Model S versus BMW i3 Pricing

A one- to five-year-old used Tesla Model S ranges from $60,989 to $92,050 while a used BMW i3 from the same model year range is priced between $27,575 to $37,991.

Tesla Model S versus BMW i3 Quality Rating

The iSeeCars Overall Quality rating for the Tesla Model S is 8.8 out of 10 while the BMW i3's quality rating is 6.5 out of 10. This results in the Tesla Model S being ranked 1 out of 25 Best Electric Cars and the BMW i3 being ranked 6 out of 25. Out of 11 Best Luxury Electric Cars, the Tesla Model S is ranked 11 and the BMW i3 is ranked 3.

Engine Power and Fuel Efficiency Comparison

For engine performance, the Tesla Model S’s base engine makes 670 horsepower, and the BMW i3 base engine makes 168 horsepower. Both the Model S and the i3 are rated to deliver an average of 124 miles per gallon of gasoline-equivalent (MPGe), with highway ranges of 405 and 153 miles respectively. Both models use electricity. The charge time for the Model S is 15 hours (240V), while the charge time for the i3 is 7 hours (240V).

Passenger Space Comparison

The Tesla Model S, a electric large car, has the advantage of offering more interior volume, reflected in more front shoulder room, front leg room, rear head room, rear shoulder room, rear leg room, and trunk space. The BMW i3, a electric compact car, has the advantage in the area of front head room.

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2022 Tesla Model S

2021 BMW i3 Electric

Pricing

New Asking Price:

-

Used Asking Price:

$60,989 - $92,050

5-Year Depreciation (lower is better):

52.3%

Pricing

New Asking Price:

-

Used Asking Price:

$27,575 - $37,991

5-Year Depreciation (lower is better):

70.9%

iSeeCars Scores & Rankings

Overall Score:

8.8 / 10

Reliability:

9.4 / 10

Retained Value:

8.3 / 10

Safety:

Not available

iSeeCars Scores & Rankings

Overall Score:

6.5 / 10

Reliability:

7.2 / 10

Retained Value:

5.8 / 10

Safety:

Not available

iSeeCars Rankings

1 / 25
1 / 25
1 / 11
1 / 11
1 / 2

iSeeCars Rankings

3 / 11
3 / 11
4 / 15
5 / 25
5 / 15
6 / 25

Summary Review

Tesla’s Model S was the vehicle that proved beyond a doubt electric cars don’t need to be boring econoboxes with a short range. This is the industry’s most prolific large electric sedan, and is considered the flagship in the Tesla line.

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Summary Review

The BMW i3 is a compact electric car and was the first European EV to market in the US. BMW broke the mold when it created this fresh approach to motoring.

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Pros and Cons

  • Unbeatable performance in top trims
  • Roomy, large sedan size
  • Appealing style, inside and out

  • No Android Auto or Apple CarPlay
  • No spare tire on any trim
  • Few luxury features

Pros and Cons

  • Ultra-green construction with low carbon footprint
  • Unique styling
  • Vegan interior options

  • Polarizing styling
  • Limited space for its price point
  • Poor reliability score
  • Adaptive cruise control is not standard
  • Rear-wheel drive only

Available Body Styles

Sedan

Available Body Styles

Hatchback

Available Drivetrain Options

Electric

Available Drivetrain Options

Electric, Plug-In Hybrid

Trim Levels

Base, Plaid

Trim Levels

Base, s

Warranty Information

Warranty, Bumper-to-Bumper:

4 years / 50000 miles

Warranty, Powertrain

8 years

Warranty, Roadside Assistance:

4 years / 50000 miles

Warranty Information

Warranty, Bumper-to-Bumper:

4 years / 50000 miles

Warranty, Powertrain

4 years / 50000 miles

Warranty, Roadside Assistance:

4 years

Safety Ratings

NHTSA Safety Rating (last 5 year average):

Not yet available

IIHS Safety Rating:

Not yet available

Safety Ratings

NHTSA Safety Rating (last 5 year average):

Not yet available

IIHS Safety Rating:

Not yet available

Base Drivetrain Specifications

Horsepower:

670 hp

Torque:

Not yet available

Power-to-Weight Ratio (higher is better):

0.147 hp per pound

Base Drivetrain Specifications

Horsepower:

168 hp

Torque:

184 foot-lbs

Power-to-Weight Ratio (higher is better):

0.057 hp per pound

Engine Specifications

Transmission:

Automatic

Standard/Optional Drivetrain Type:

AWD

MPGe:

124 / 115 / 120

Range (city/hwy):

405 miles

Recommended Fuel Type:

Electricity

Battery Size/Capacity :

100 kWh

Maximum Charging Rate:

15 hours (240V)

Engine Specifications

Transmission:

Automatic

Standard/Optional Drivetrain Type:

RWD

MPGe:

124 / 102 / 113

Range (city/hwy):

153 miles

Recommended Fuel Type:

Electricity

Battery Size/Capacity:

42 kWh

Maximum Charging Rate:

7 hours (240V)

Standard/Optional Features

Apple CarPlay:

N/A

Android Auto:

N/A

Wireless Smartphone Charging:

Standard

Keyless Entry:

Standard

Keyless Ignition:

Standard

Adaptive Cruise Control:

Standard

Heated Seats:

Standard

Cooled/Ventilated Seats:

Standard

Leather Upholstery:

Standard

Navigation System:

Standard

Sunroof/Moonroof:

Standard

Heated Steering Wheel:

Standard

Standard/Optional Features

Apple CarPlay:

Standard

Android Auto:

N/A

Wireless Smartphone Charging:

Available

Keyless Entry:

Standard

Keyless Ignition:

Standard

Adaptive Cruise Control:

Available

Heated Seats:

Standard

Cooled/Ventilated Seats:

N/A

Leather Upholstery:

Available

Navigation System:

Standard

Sunroof/Moonroof:

Available

Heated Steering Wheel:

N/A

Safety Equipment

Forward Collision Warning:

Standard

Pedestrian Detection:

Standard

Lane Departure Warning:

Standard

Lane Keeping Assist:

Available

Blind Spot Monitoring:

Standard

Rear Cross-Traffic Alert:

N/A

360-Degree Camera:

Available

Rear Seat Reminder:

N/A

Driver Attention Monitoring:

N/A

Safety Equipment

Forward Collision Warning:

Available

Pedestrian Detection:

Available

Lane Departure Warning:

N/A

Lane Keeping Assist:

N/A

Blind Spot Monitoring:

N/A

Rear Cross-Traffic Alert:

N/A

360-Degree Camera:

N/A

Rear Seat Reminder:

N/A

Driver Attention Monitoring:

N/A

Interior Dimensions

Front Head Room:

39.7 inches

Front Leg Room:

42.4 inches

Front Shoulder Room:

58.4 inches

Rear Head Room:

38.1 inches

Rear Leg Room:

35.5 inches

Rear Shoulder Room:

55.1 inches

Cargo Space:

28.2 cubic feet

Overall Interior Volume:

120.3 cubic feet

Interior Dimensions

Front Head Room:

39.8 inches

Front Leg Room:

40.5 inches

Front Shoulder Room:

53.6 inches

Rear Head Room:

37.2 inches

Rear Leg Room:

31.9 inches

Rear Shoulder Room:

49.2 inches

Cargo Space:

15.1 cubic feet

Overall Interior Volume:

98.7 cubic feet

Exterior Dimensions

Curb Weight:

4561 lbs

Width:

86.2 inches

Height:

56.3 inches

Length:

197.7 inches

Wheelbase:

116.5 inches

Ground Clearance:

4.6 inches

Exterior Dimensions

Curb Weight:

2972 lbs

Width:

80.3 inches

Height:

62.9 inches

Length:

158.3 inches

Wheelbase:

101.2 inches

Ground Clearance:

5.5 inches

Standard Wheel/Tire Information

Wheel Size:

19.0 x 8.0 inches

Wheel Type:

aluminum

Tire Size:

255/45R19

Standard Wheel/Tire Information

Wheel Size:

19.0 x 5.0 inches

Wheel Type:

alloy

Tire Size:

155/70R19