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Motoring: Going Electric

Pursuits | By Alan Judd

A friend has gone electric, buying a £35,000 BMW i3, the Range Extender model, incorporating a small petrol engine. Like most buyers nowadays, he bought it on a lease deal, whereby he effectively hires the car and, after three years, either gives it back, trades it in for another or buys it outright for a lump sum. So far, he’s like a dog with two tails – he couldn’t be more pleased. Although UK Car of the Year in 2014, the i3 is no beauty queen. In fact, it’s a bug-eyed lump, cluttered by BMW’s insistence on a version of their kidney grill which, my friend reckons, lets rain into the front boot.  But he’ll spend more time inside looking out than outside looking in, and that’s where this car scores. The interior is roomy and high, there’s adequate storage, the seats are comfortable and the plastics and fittings are...

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