Newbie - choosing between volt, bmw i3, and tesla M3
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Thread: Newbie - choosing between volt, bmw i3, and tesla M3

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\r\n Default Newbie - choosing between volt, bmw i3, and tesla M3\r\n

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\r\n Greetings from Los Angeles!
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\r\nI\'m tired of giving my money to the oil companies. They are singlehandedly endangering the human race, they\'ve been lying to us for years, filling our government with their puppets, and polluting our world so they they can enrich themselves. I want to vote against them with my dollars.
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\r\nI\'ve always been a big tesla fan, and have been eagerly awaiting the Model 3, for which I\'ve put down a $1000 deposit and have a good spot in the reservation line.
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\r\nBut as the release date approaches, I have a few questions in my mind.
\r\nOne is the tax credits - will they still be available?
\r\nAnother is tesla build quality. I\'ve heard a lot of horror stories.
\r\nI\'m also not crazy about the M3\'s interior. No driver instrument cluster? That giant computer monitor? I want a high tech car, but I don\'t see why that means I have to have a giant screen in my face when I drive.
\r\nAlso I think they tesla supercharger network will be overwhelmed by the coming wave of teslas, meaning those long distance trips you imagine won\'t be possible in reality.
\r\nI\'ve also never bought a new car. I prefer to let someone else take the depreciation and buy it when its 2-3 years used. I\'m unsure what the depreciation on the M3s will be, and I\'m wondering if I\'d be smarter waiting a couple years and then grabbing a used one.
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\r\nSo my alternate options are a used 2014-15 volt or a used BMW i3.
\r\nBoth of these have depreciated rapidly and are much more affordable for me. In fact I could get one of each for the price of a new tesla M3.
\r\nI test drove the i3 and loved it, as well as the interior design. I hated the exterior at first, but I\'ve come to kind of like it.
\r\nAs for the volt, I like the old gen1 design much more than the new design, which is far more bland to me. Gen2 Looks like a an old person car or rental fleet car to me.
\r\nI haven\'t test driven one yet, but I\'m not expecting it to be as fun as the i3, but I know it would be much more useful, without the i3\'s long distance limitations, and still allow me to commute to work without using any gas.
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\r\nThe other consideration is my fiance HATES the way the i3 looks. Doesn\'t care for the volt either, but doesn\'t think it\'s as bad as the i3. Obviously she\'d rather be escorted around in a new tesla. Women and their competitive consumerism
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\r\nSo I\'m just here to learn more and help me make my decision by the time the Tesla M3 comes out.\r\n
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    \r\n The Volt is the simplest option - due to the dual fuel nature of the car, it can drop in to anyone\'s life with no changes, and gradually convert them to mostly electric driving. They are solid cars that have served people well.
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    \nWe\'ll have to see how the 3 interior plays out - I\'m still betting there will be major changes for the actual production car - possibly a big augmented reality HUD.
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    \nTesla reliability stories are overblown - build quality has improved over time, and the core of the cars mostly wasn\'t problematic anyway (though Tesla replaced a lot of still functional drive unit for noises - drive units that are a lot different from what most Teslas now have.)
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    \nThere is a real problem getting repair parts for crashed cars at the moment, but that won\'t necessarily continue.
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    \nI wouldn\'t worry too much about the Superchargers - Tesla has promised to double the number this year, and 90% of charging is at home/work anyway. They are now doing real time status in the car\'s navigation system, and in the future I expect to see them actively adjusting Nav routing and supercharger targets to deconflict routes.
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    \nNot really a fan of the i3. It could have been a great car, but came out weird and oddly limited, with a checkered reliability and odd exterior and interior in my opinion.\r\n
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    Walter
    \r\nC4884 - White Diamond, purchased 10/15/11
    \r\n2016 Tesla X75D delivered 8/25/16
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    \r\n Agree with Saghost
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    \nVoting with the pocketbook is the best way. Start now.
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    \nI would go with 2015 Volt premier for the reason you stated then get a used Model 3 later. Don\'t wait. You will enjoy the performance.
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    \nNot a fan of the i3 either.
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    \nBased on some article I read, the model 3 for the most part will not be here soon enough to take advantage of the Tax Rebate.\r\n
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    \r\n Buy a Bolt and get tax credit.\r\n
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    \r\n Get a non-materialistic fiance that says "Get whatever you want. It\'s your car and your money."
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    \r\n(now if she is a sugar-mama and it is HER money, scratch what I said and practice the phrase, "yes, dear".)
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    \r\nThe i3 was designed as a European city car. The Volt and Bolt were designed for American commuters. The M3 is still just a promise.
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    \r\nThe Gen1 Volt is the best deal going IMO. Inexpensive, reliable, fun, good for the environment and giving the finger to OPEC.\r\n
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    \r\n Interesting that the Bolt isn\'t on your list but the M3 is. The Bolts are available right now and the M3 isn\'t. Is the fiancé going to help pay for it?\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by srmarti\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Interesting that the Bolt isn\'t on your list but the M3 is. The Bolts are available right now and the M3 isn\'t.
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    \nI wondered the same. Take a Bolt EV test drive at least. Same for the Volt.\r\n
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    2011 Cyber Gray, Std Wheels, Black Leather/White Console, Bose, Nav, Htd Seats, Park Assist. Picked up May 2011
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    \nBest All Electric Miles: 54.2
    \nLifetime: 85,558 miles, 125 MPG, Remaining Oil Life 38%
    \nTypical Commute: 60 miles
    \n30 day Stats: 966 miles, 108
    MPG, 62% Electric, 38% gas, Saved 33 gal., 31 kW-hr/100 miles
    \nHidden Content Free Volt Manual here: Hidden Content
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    \r\n The Volt is a no excuses car for getting your feet wet in EV driving.
    \r\nIt would serve you well for a few years until the M3 is available to you.
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    \r\nA Bolt with DCFC would give you M3 functionality now,,, almost. The DCFC network is increasing all the time.
    \r\nThe Tesla SC network will not be free for M3\'s. Road trips may cost very similar with these two EV\'s. But one is here and now.
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    \r\nSince you and her are into \'Looks\', you\'ll just have to fight it out!\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Norton\r\n View Post\r\n
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    A Bolt with DCFC would give you M3 functionality now,,, almost. The DCFC network is increasing all the time.
    \nThe Tesla SC network will not be free for M3\'s. Road trips may cost very similar with these two EV\'s. But one is here and now.
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    \nWith respect, I don\'t agree with this at all. So far the fastest demonstrated Bolt charging is around 45 kW - less than half of what the 3 will probably manage on Superchargers, and really too slow for convenient road trips. The ramp also seems pretty ugly as SoC rises.
    \n
    \nTesla is including 400 kWh/year free on the S and X now and will probably do the same on the 3 - that\'ll cover a thousand miles of road trips. Even after that, Tesla\'s rates are a fraction of any other DCFC I\'ve seen, despite being much faster charging on a bigger network. They mostly seem to be about 20% above what residential power costs in the various areas - and about half what most DCFC vendors charge.
    \n
    \nThe Bolt doesn\'t have onboard Nav or adaptive cruise control even as options, but every 3 will have second generation Autopilot Hardware, and over the air updates will make it a better car as time goes on (GM said they can do those now on the Bolt - we\'ll see how committed they are to actually make it happen.) DCFC is actually an option on the Bolt?!?
    \n
    \nSo yes, the Bolt seems to be a good car, and is here now - but no, it isn\'t almost the functionality of the 3 except in the very basic 200+ mile sub $40k EV part in my opinion, and no, road trips aren\'t likely to be equally easy or equally expensive.\r\n
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    Walter
    \r\nC4884 - White Diamond, purchased 10/15/11
    \r\n2016 Tesla X75D delivered 8/25/16
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    \r\n I think you\'ll be pleasantly surprised by the build quality of either generation Volt. There are major upgrades with the gen 2 that depending on your lifestyle you may really benefit from (more electric range, better gas mpg using regular instead of premium, Apple Carplay/Android Carplay, etc.) but if you don\'t plan on using much gas anyway, then the range and premium gas penalty may be acceptable to you and you\'d get out with a cheaper purchase price on the gen 1. I have both and can say I honestly love both of them. If I absolutely had to pick a favorite, it would be the gen 2 because of the upgrades, but I\'m still in love with my gen 1 as well.\r\n
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    ***2016 Volt - Kinetic Blue Metallic, LT, w/ Comfort Package and Bose***
    \r\n***2013 Volt - Blue Topaz Metallic, Premium w/Safety Pkg 1 & 2***
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    \r\n First, to the OP...
    \n
    \nNo one outside of Tesla even knows what the production Model 3 interior will look. So we\'ll have to wait on that.
    \n
    \nAs for tax credit availability... it\'s a crap shoot. Did you get your M3 reservation in person before the unveiling event? That would give you a big leg up, and being in CA would help too. But there are so many unknowns still about how Model 3 production and delivery timelines will play out.
    \n
    \nAs for depreciation, it\'s been pretty awful for almost all new EV\'s -' + '- with the exception of Tesla. However, you\'re right that the huge numbers of M3\'s that Tesla hopes to build could completely change that dynamic. So a used vehicle would definitely help insulate you from that.
    \n
    \nIt\'s hard to go wrong with a Volt. I like mine a lot. I\'d probably have upgraded to a Gen 2 Volt if the Model 3 wasn\'t right around the corner. Also, you might consider a used Gen 2 Volt instead of a used Gen 1 if you don\'t mind paying more. I like my Gen 1, but the Gen 2 is better almost all-around. (Darn homelink omission!)
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Norton\r\n View Post\r\n
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    A Bolt with DCFC would give you M3 functionality now,,, almost. The DCFC network is increasing all the time.
    \nThe Tesla SC network will not be free for M3\'s. Road trips may cost very similar with these two EV\'s. But one is here and now.
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by saghost\r\n View Post\r\n
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    With respect, I don\'t agree with this at all. So far the fastest demonstrated Bolt charging is around 45 kW - less than half of what the 3 will probably manage on Superchargers, and really too slow for convenient road trips. The ramp also seems pretty ugly as SoC rises.
    \n
    \nTesla is including 400 kWh/year free on the S and X now and will probably do the same on the 3 - that\'ll cover a thousand miles of road trips. Even after that, Tesla\'s rates are a fraction of any other DCFC I\'ve seen, despite being much faster charging on a bigger network. They mostly seem to be about 20% above what residential power costs in the various areas - and about half what most DCFC vendors charge.
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    \nVery true.
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    \nI think Tesla\'s Supercharger network\'s advantages over the SAE CCS DCFC network are VASTLY underappreciated:
    \n
    • all SC locations are strategically located (both in terms of geographic location and also proximity to restaurants and/or shopping)
    • \n
    • all SC locations have a minimum of 4 plugs (and typically more)
    • \n
    • all SC locations have consistent power ratings* (*absent malfunction, at least. I know this is an issue Tesla needs to fix.)
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    • all SC locations are operated by one company (no worrying about subscriptions to various networks)
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    • low-or-no cost pricing (no worrying about paying absurd $/kWh or $/minute prices that are way more than gasoline equivalents)
    • \n

    \nGoing on Plugshare and filtering by SAE CCS chargers, you will see a lot of pins on a map. But that\'s SO not the whole story.
    \n
    \nThat SAE CCS map is full of high-cost, subscription-requiring chargers, many with only 24kW of power and none with more than 50kW, and many times with only a single charger at a location, which is often a hotel or car dealership.
    \n
    \nThe "laissez faire" approach being taken to the build-out of the SAE CCS DCFC network in the USA -' + '- combined its limited charge rates (to-date, at least) -' + '- looks like a near-disaster to me (from a prospective BEV owner\'s point of view) and a hugely inefficient use of resources.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Norton\r\n View Post\r\n
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    A Bolt with DCFC would give you M3 functionality now,,, almost. The DCFC network is increasing all the time.
    \r\nThe Tesla SC network will not be free for M3\'s. Road trips may cost very similar with these two EV\'s. But one is here and now.
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    \r\n Actually I reserved early enough so that I\'ll still have free supercharging if I buy the M3, which I think would add to the resale value if I sell it. (If that can be transferred like a warranty or HOV stickers.)\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by srmarti\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Interesting that the Bolt isn\'t on your list but the M3 is. The Bolts are available right now and the M3 isn\'t. Is the fiancé going to help pay for it?
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    \nYeah I don\'t like how it looks. Too boring. Like a honda fit or chevy spark. Plus for that price I\'d rather go with the M3 and have something that looks awesome. The choice is between spending a lot and getting a tesla M3, or saving a lot with a used gen1 volt or i3.\r\n
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    \r\n If your commute is under 30 miles round trip, and you have access to a 120v outlet at home, for you the 2011-2015 Volt will act like an EV but with more punch than a Leaf has. And no range anxiety, ever. A Volt is significantly quicker than Prius and more nimble.
    \nThey love stop-n-go traffic which often increases your range instead of decreasing it.
    \n
    \nAnd you get a HOV sticker that allows you to drive the HOV lanes without a passenger.
    \n
    \nNobody has a clue what Tesla Motors will ship as a 2018 Model 3. Or a 2018 Volt. Or a 2018 Bolt.
    \n
    \nWhat we do know is GM\'s specs for the Volts and Bolts are unlikely to downgrade. The Model 3? Anybodies guess. I do not think they will be able to make $35k high HP 215 mile range cars in 9 months. But I never expected them to when I reserved on day one.
    \n
    \nNo, you will not get free supercharging on Model 3\'s unless something changes. It will have Supercharging hardware on the car, but the supercharger stations will cost you money after 400kWh(?) or so they say.\r\n
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    Ménage à trois - 2017, 2016 and 2013 Volts.
    \r\nTesla Model 3 Reserved
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Qinsp\r\n View Post\r\n
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    No, you will not get free supercharging on Model 3\'s unless something changes. It will have Supercharging hardware on the car, but the supercharger stations will cost you money after 400kWh(?) or so they say.
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    \nIt says free supercharging is over for models ordered before 2016.
    \nSo placing a reservation in 2016 doesn\'t count as placing an order? Bummer.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by slipnslider\r\n View Post\r\n
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    It says free supercharging is over for models ordered after 2016.
    \nSo placing a reservation in 2016 doesn\'t count as placing an order? Bummer.
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    \nCorrect. A reservation is a placeholder for ordering. It determines when you will be able to order. First will come Tesla Employees, then Tesla Owners, then California supposedly. So you get to order in 2018 sometime if they keep on schedule.\r\n
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    Ménage à trois - 2017, 2016 and 2013 Volts.
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by slipnslider\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Yeah I don\'t like how it looks. Too boring. Like a honda fit or chevy spark. Plus for that price I\'d rather go with the M3 and have something that looks awesome. The choice is between spending a lot and getting a tesla M3, or saving a lot with a used gen1 volt or i3.
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    \nBut you LIKE the i3? Well I guess they\'re ok if not the two-tone variety. That to me just enhances the ugly. Heck whatever\'s most important to you.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by srmarti\r\n View Post\r\n
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    But you LIKE the i3? Well I guess they\'re ok if not the two-tone variety. That to me just enhances the ugly. Heck whatever\'s most important to you.
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    \nYeah it\'s strange. I think the i3 looks weird, but it\'s come to grow on me as GOOD weird. The Bolt just looks like a typical boardroom design-by-commitee car. The i3 looks like it was some designer\'s true vision. It\'s the thin tires that I still dislike the most though.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by slipnslider\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Greetings from Los Angeles!
    \n
    \nI\'m tired of giving my money to the oil companies. They are singlehandedly endangering the human race, they\'ve been lying to us for years, filling our government with their puppets, and polluting our world so they they can enrich themselves. I want to vote against them with my dollars.
    \n
    \nI\'ve always been a big tesla fan, and have been eagerly awaiting the Model 3, for which I\'ve put down a $1000 deposit and have a good spot in the reservation line.
    \n
    \nBut as the release date approaches, I have a few questions in my mind.
    \nOne is the tax credits - will they still be available?
    \nAnother is tesla build quality. I\'ve heard a lot of horror stories.
    \nI\'m also not crazy about the M3\'s interior. No driver instrument cluster? That giant computer monitor? I want a high tech car, but I don\'t see why that means I have to have a giant screen in my face when I drive.
    \nAlso I think they tesla supercharger network will be overwhelmed by the coming wave of teslas, meaning those long distance trips you imagine won\'t be possible in reality.
    \nI\'ve also never bought a new car. I prefer to let someone else take the depreciation and buy it when its 2-3 years used. I\'m unsure what the depreciation on the M3s will be, and I\'m wondering if I\'d be smarter waiting a couple years and then grabbing a used one.
    \n
    \nSo my alternate options are a used 2014-15 volt or a used BMW i3.
    \nBoth of these have depreciated rapidly and are much more affordable for me. In fact I could get one of each for the price of a new tesla M3.
    \nI test drove the i3 and loved it, as well as the interior design. I hated the exterior at first, but I\'ve come to kind of like it.
    \nAs for the volt, I like the old gen1 design much more than the new design, which is far more bland to me. Gen2 Looks like a an old person car or rental fleet car to me.
    \nI haven\'t test driven one yet, but I\'m not expecting it to be as fun as the i3, but I know it would be much more useful, without the i3\'s long distance limitations, and still allow me to commute to work without using any gas.
    \n
    \nThe other consideration is my fiance HATES the way the i3 looks. Doesn\'t care for the volt either, but doesn\'t think it\'s as bad as the i3. Obviously she\'d rather be escorted around in a new tesla. Women and their competitive consumerism
    \n
    \nSo I\'m just here to learn more and help me make my decision by the time the Tesla M3 comes out.
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    \nWe have both an i3 and Volt now. Both 2017\'s and both with range extenders.
    \n
    \nMy wife didn\'t like the i3\'s looks either at first. Now it\'s grown on her. She also really likes the Volt\'s looks and thinks it\'s quiet and comfortable.
    \n
    \nThe i3 is definitely far sportier in feel to me. It feels nimbler, quicker in reaction, and lighter on its feet. Mostly because it is. It\'s some 600 lbs lighter than the Volt at least.
    \n
    \nYou also sit up taller and have a far better view out the windows than you do with the Volt. So it feels more airy and open than the Volt does.
    \n
    \nI personally am not a big fan of how the Volt feels or drives. It\'s smooth, competent, and quick. But it doesn\'t feel nimble, is a bare to park for me (you will most definitely get rim rash and dings and dents with this car at the extremities), charges slower, carries more dead-weight around, and has a smaller tighter feeling cabin than the i3.
    \n
    \nOn the other hand, the i3 has its own quirks. The infotainment system is incredibly bad compared to the Volt\'s. Truly truly bad interface IMO. The inability to reduce strong regen can be tiring at times but helpful in stop and go traffic. The suicide doors are novel but get a bit old after a while...but they match this car well.
    \n
    \nObviously you can go a lot further overall with the Volt. But for 2017, the i3 can do 114 miles EPA rated electric range. We are getting around 130 per charge. However, I\'m getting about 75 miles per charge with my Volt. But it charges agonizingly slowly....pitiful actually in this day and age.
    \n
    \nThe reliability of the i3 is fine. I know there have been a couple of recalls and an issue with the REX model. But BMW takes care of these things quickly and offers good service to its customers provided you find a good dealer. Chevy dealers on the other hand are a real crap shoot.
    \n
    \nHas your fiancé driven the i3? It\'s a really really fun car to drive.
    \n
    \nBTW, what\'s your budget? Would you be willing to lease a new car and just get the State credit? I got a very good deal on our i3...actually considering the sticker price and the fact that no other BMW dealer was able or willing to even come close.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by jupitermoon\r\n View Post\r\n
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    We have both an i3 and Volt now. Both 2017\'s and both with range extenders.
    \n
    \n... The i3 is definitely far sportier in feel to me... It feels nimbler, quicker in reaction, and lighter on its feet. Mostly because it is. It\'s some 600 lbs lighter than the Volt at least...
    \n
    \nObviously you can go a lot further overall with the Volt. But for 2017, the i3 can do 114 miles EPA rated electric range. We are getting around 130 per charge. However, I\'m getting about 75 miles per charge with my Volt. But it charges agonizingly slowly....pitiful actually in this day and age.
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    \nWow, you have both the 2017 i3 REx and the 2017 Volt! That\'s some heavy duty EV technology! The i3 should charge 2x faster than the Volt 32Amps vs 16Amps max, and the REx has DCFC. Have you used public charging at all for either of your EVs?\r\n
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    Hidden Content 2017 Volt Premier Pepperdust metallic Jet Black/Brandy w/pkg I & II, AAC; Clipper Creek LCS-20
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    \r\n The M3 might be the best car in several ways, but I would personally rule it out based on the unknown waiting period. You don\'t really know when production will start, how quickly it will ramp up, or how many buyers are really in front of you. You also don\'t know what the price will be or if they will be optioned up to an unreasonable level. I also think it is doubtful that the tax credit will not have run out by then (if it is not cancelled all together before).
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    \nI think you should decide from the other choices and then consider the M3 for your next car. Unless you are perfectly happy with your current car and it is still relatively new.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Barry\r\n View Post\r\n
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    The M3 might be the best car in several ways, but I would personally rule it out based on the unknown waiting period. You don\'t really know when production will start, how quickly it will ramp up, or how many buyers are really in front of you. You also don\'t know what the price will be or if they will be optioned up to an unreasonable level. I also think it is doubtful that the tax credit will not have run out by then (if it is not cancelled all together before).
    \n
    \nI think you should decide from the other choices and then consider the M3 for your next car. Unless you are perfectly happy with your current car and it is still relatively new.
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    \nMy current car is an Infinity G35 with 100k miles. It\'s still a good car so I\'m not under immediate pressure to replace it, but it\'s just starting to come into that phase where repairs will become more expensive and more frequent. This is the time when I usually like to let a car go. I prefer to be the second owner and keep them from about 20k-110k. It\'s been a good car but I want to go electric.
    \n
    \nI think I\'ll wait to make my final decision until I find out my place in line for the M3, find out what my tax credit would be, and maybe even get to test drive the M3. In the meantime I want to test the Gen1 volt and figure out my backup plan.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Wow, you have both the 2017 i3 REx and the 2017 Volt! That\'s some heavy duty EV technology! The i3 should charge 2x faster than the Volt 32Amps vs 16Amps max, and the REx has DCFC. Have you used public charging at all for either of your EVs?
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    \nI had a Spark EV before my Volt and yes I\'ve used plenty of public charging outside. Never a fast charger as my Spark EV didn\'t have on-board fast charging. But the i3 does and I plan to use it when I can. But we charge both our cars at home with a level 2 charger. I charge my car every night and we charge the REX every 3-4 days.
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    \r\nThe i3 is an excellent car. It really is....ignore the negative comments made by people in regards to it.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by jupitermoon\r\n View Post\r\n
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    ....
    \r\nThe i3 is an excellent car. It really is.....
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    \nUnless you want to go farther than a 180 mile radius from your home and not try to climb any hills with the 33 HP Rex when the battery gets depleted first, (by design).
    \r\nIt is NOT a road trip car.
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Eddycurrent\r\n View Post\r\n
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    .... Also looking at Prius Prime . Decisions Decisions.
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    \nThe Prime is still not a \'full function EV\'. Even though it sort of has cabin heat now with its heat pump system,
    \r\ndo you know what happens when you press the DEFROST button? The engine powers up. You can\'t get heat and dehumidification out of a heat pump at the same time.
    \r\nAnd old fashioned oil changes are still required no matter how many miles are on the engine.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Norton\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Unless you want to go farther than a 180 mile radius from your home and not try to climb any hills with the 33 HP Rex when the battery gets depleted first, (by design).
    \nIt is NOT a road trip car.
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    \nI always rent a car if I want to go on a road trip. I don\'t even think twice about it because for other 99% of the time I\'m not on a road trip. So for me there\'s no real reason to worry if my daily driver can comfortably take me to Mammoth or not let\'s say.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by jupitermoon\r\n View Post\r\n
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    We have both an i3 and Volt now. Both 2017\'s and both with range extenders.
    \r\n
    \r\nMy wife didn\'t like the i3\'s looks either at first. Now it\'s grown on her. She also really likes the Volt\'s looks and thinks it\'s quiet and comfortable.
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    \r\nThe i3 is definitely far sportier in feel to me. It feels nimbler, quicker in reaction, and lighter on its feet. Mostly because it is. It\'s some 600 lbs lighter than the Volt at least.
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    \r\nYou also sit up taller and have a far better view out the windows than you do with the Volt. So it feels more airy and open than the Volt does.
    \r\n
    \r\nI personally am not a big fan of how the Volt feels or drives. It\'s smooth, competent, and quick. But it doesn\'t feel nimble, is a bare to park for me (you will most definitely get rim rash and dings and dents with this car at the extremities), charges slower, carries more dead-weight around, and has a smaller tighter feeling cabin than the i3.
    \r\n
    \r\nOn the other hand, the i3 has its own quirks. The infotainment system is incredibly bad compared to the Volt\'s. Truly truly bad interface IMO. The inability to reduce strong regen can be tiring at times but helpful in stop and go traffic. The suicide doors are novel but get a bit old after a while...but they match this car well.
    \r\n
    \r\nObviously you can go a lot further overall with the Volt. But for 2017, the i3 can do 114 miles EPA rated electric range. We are getting around 130 per charge. However, I\'m getting about 75 miles per charge with my Volt. But it charges agonizingly slowly....pitiful actually in this day and age.
    \r\n
    \r\nThe reliability of the i3 is fine. I know there have been a couple of recalls and an issue with the REX model. But BMW takes care of these things quickly and offers good service to its customers provided you find a good dealer. Chevy dealers on the other hand are a real crap shoot.
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    \r\nHas your fiancé driven the i3? It\'s a really really fun car to drive.
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    \r\nBTW, what\'s your budget? Would you be willing to lease a new car and just get the State credit? I got a very good deal on our i3...actually considering the sticker price and the fact that no other BMW dealer was able or willing to even come close.
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    \nMy budget varies wildly. I\'m willing to pay much more for a tesla than I would for a chevy or i3. I\'ve never bought a new car. The only reason I\'m even considering the tesla M3 is because I can probably get the full fed and state refunds, totalling $10k. No way I\'d buy one without that. And I\'d get a pretty basic model - no dual motors or larger battery. Hopefully about $30-35k after the tax credits.
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    \r\nI\'m not willing to spend that much on a NON-tesla EV, and I would only consider used models which have depreciated drastically. If I don\'t get the tesla, I\'d rather keep it around $15-20k, which is why I\'m looking at used Gen1 volts, and used i3\'s.
    \r\n
    \r\nI do love the way the i3 performs. On the one quick test drive I took, I didn\'t mind the strong regen. I love the open airy, futuristic feel inside. The infotainment system didn\'t bother me too much. I\'d really like to find on with the harman karmon stereo though, which seems like a pretty rare option. I think a dealer nearby does the extended test drives so I plan to do that in a couple weeks and see if I can get the fiance to see why I like the i3 so much.
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    \r\nAs for the volt, I haven\'t driven one yet, but your description sounds about like what I expect. Slightly cramped interior, poor visibility, less exciting performance, but the gas range is a HUGE plus. I wouldn\'t have to use the gas engine much, but not having to plan around my battery capacity is a major factor.
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    \r\nI think the tesla M3 will depreciate much slower than the i3 and volt did, but one possibility is getting a used volt now, then a used M3 in 3-4 years. I\'ll miss out on the tax rebate, but it seems that those rebates actually contribute the lower resale value.
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    \r\nIt\'s going to be hard to make any decision until I can price and test drive an M3, but I just want to go in with all the information I need.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by slipnslider\r\n View Post\r\n
    \r\n
    My budget varies wildly. I\'m willing to pay much more for a tesla than I would for a chevy or i3. I\'ve never bought a new car. The only reason I\'m even considering the tesla M3 is because I can probably get the full fed and state refunds, totalling $10k. No way I\'d buy one without that. And I\'d get a pretty basic model - no dual motors or larger battery. Hopefully about $30-35k after the tax credits.
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    \nLike Barry said, it is VERY likely that by the time you can buy a basic M3 all of the Federal tax credits for Tesla will be gone. Every Model S and X sold counts against the 200K limit and Elon Musk has already stated that most/all of the early Model 3\'s will be premium models.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by Just_Jon\r\n View Post\r\n
    \r\n
    Like Barry said, it is VERY likely that by the time you can buy a basic M3 all of the Federal tax credits for Tesla will be gone. Every Model S and X sold counts against the 200K limit and Elon Musk has already stated that most/all of the early Model 3\'s will be premium models.
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    \nYes but what does he consider "early?"
    \nHere\'s an informative thread on what to expect in terms of tax credits. Many rough calculations are that full tax credits could be available even until June 2018.
    \nhttps://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/thre...ication.67625/
    \nOn page 18 TROY has a very good post about where things stand today:
    \nhttps://teslamotorsclub.com/tmc/thre....67625/page-19
    \n
    \n"#367
    \nTroy, Feb 23, 2017 Last edited: Feb 23, 2017
    \n
    \n Hi. Here is the latest situation. Both the pessimistic scenario and the optimistic scenario look possible. It\'s a close call. My calculations show they will hit 200K USA sales on 21st Dec 2017 if things go according to plan. As of today, I\'m calculating 115,375 sales in the USA. If they hit their targets, they will finish this year with 44,702 Model 3\'s and 206,096 total USA sales. That\'s the pessimistic scenario in terms of tax credits. However, it\'s possible that volume production won\'t start in Sep 2017 as planned. Another possibility is that Tesla might game the system by shipping more cars to Europe and Asia near the end of this year.
    \n
    \n Pessimistic Scenario (if Tesla hits 200,000 USA sales in Q4 2017)
    \n $7,500 for deliveries until Mar 31, 2018
    \n $3,750 for deliveries until Sep 30, 2018
    \n $1,875 for deliveries until Mar 31, 2019
    \n
    \n Optimistic Scenario (if Tesla hits 200,000 USA sales in Q1 2018)
    \n $7,500 for deliveries until Jun 30, 2018
    \n $3,750 for deliveries until Dec 31, 2018
    \n $1,875 for deliveries until Jun 30, 2019"
    \n
    \n-' + '-' + '-' + '-' + '-' + '-' + '-
    \nKeep in mind the tax credit doesnt suddenly END at 200,000 units, that number simply starts the countdown clock to ending.
    \nPlus I live in California, where the earliest deliveries are likely to start. They\'ll may well be delivering CA base models before east coast maxed-out models.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by slipnslider\r\n View Post\r\n
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    Pessimistic Scenario (if Tesla hits 200,000 USA sales in Q4 2017)
    \r\n $7,500 for deliveries until Mar 31, 2018
    \r\n $3,750 for deliveries until Sep 30, 2018
    \r\n $1,875 for deliveries until Mar 31, 2019
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    \r\n $7,500 for deliveries until Jun 30, 2018
    \r\n $3,750 for deliveries until Dec 31, 2018
    \r\n $1,875 for deliveries until Jun 30, 2019"
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    \nOkay, let\'s work with that. Let\'s also be generous and assume that Tesla can meet their promise to produce 2000 Model 3s per week, right out of the gate. Let\'s be simple and say that there\'s 14 weeks in a quarter, too. So, 28,000 Model 3s per quarter. Tesla have been selling 20k S/X vehicles per quarter, so I don\'t disagree with when that tax credit cap will be hit, so for convenience, let\'s presume that car 200,000 for the tax credits is the first Model 3, and it\'s on January 2, 2018. That gives us 56,000 Model 3s getting the $7,500 credit, cars 56,001-112,000 getting half a tax credit, and 112,001-168,000 getting less than $2,000. That\'s not even half of the reservations. And I seriously wonder how many people of that 340,000 will, looking at their reservation number a month from the end of the $7500 credits and that they haven\'t even been able to place their order yet because they don\'t want a fully-loaded one, aren\'t just going to ask for that thousand dollars back, and go take a second look at the Bolt where they CAN still get the full tax credit.\r\n
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    \r\n Quote Originally Posted by slipnslider\r\n View Post\r\n
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    My budget varies wildly. I\'m willing to pay much more for a tesla than I would for a chevy or i3. I\'ve never bought a new car. The only reason I\'m even considering the tesla M3 is because I can probably get the full fed and state refunds, totalling $10k. No way I\'d buy one without that. And I\'d get a pretty basic model - no dual motors or larger battery. Hopefully about $30-35k after the tax credits.
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    \r\nI\'m not willing to spend that much on a NON-tesla EV, and I would only consider used models which have depreciated drastically. If I don\'t get the tesla, I\'d rather keep it around $15-20k, which is why I\'m looking at used Gen1 volts, and used i3\'s.
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    \r\nI do love the way the i3 performs. On the one quick test drive I took, I didn\'t mind the strong regen. I love the open airy, futuristic feel inside. The infotainment system didn\'t bother me too much. I\'d really like to find on with the harman karmon stereo though, which seems like a pretty rare option. I think a dealer nearby does the extended test drives so I plan to do that in a couple weeks and see if I can get the fiance to see why I like the i3 so much.
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    \r\nAs for the volt, I haven\'t driven one yet, but your description sounds about like what I expect. Slightly cramped interior, poor visibility, less exciting performance, but the gas range is a HUGE plus. I wouldn\'t have to use the gas engine much, but not having to plan around my battery capacity is a major factor.
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    \r\nI think the tesla M3 will depreciate much slower than the i3 and volt did, but one possibility is getting a used volt now, then a used M3 in 3-4 years. I\'ll miss out on the tax rebate, but it seems that those rebates actually contribute the lower resale value.
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    \r\nIt\'s going to be hard to make any decision until I can price and test drive an M3, but I just want to go in with all the information I need.
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    \nThere is no way that the M3 will sell for the price you are looking for. When that thing comes out, A) you\'ll be waiting for a while and B) the pricing of something you seem to want (package-wise) is going to push this car well into the mid-40\'s if not more. No one knows for sure but that\'s my guess based on the history of automotive industry trends when something new comes out.
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    \r\nYou are selling yourself short IMO if you don\'t consider other cars besides a Tesla for the price you are willing to spend. At the moment, you are basing your want for a Tesla on the current products that are far more expensive than other EVs on the market. The M3 will NOT be a Model S or X no matter how hard Tesla tries to make it so. So I think you are putting it up on a pedestal that it\'s not worthy of. So keep that in mind.
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    \r\nIMO, lease one of the two for 3 years and by the time the hysteria over the M3 dies down, you\'ll be able to get one at a reasonable price.
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    \r\nLike I said, I got excellent deals on both my cars so PM me if you wish to be put in touch with the dealers I worked with.\r\n
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    1. #1
      Join Date
      Mar 2017
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      California
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      Default Newbie - choosing between volt, bmw i3, and tesla M3

      Greetings from Los Angeles!

      I'm tired of giving my money to the oil companies. They are singlehandedly endangering the human race, they've been lying to us for years, filling our government with their puppets, and polluting our world so they they can enrich themselves. I want to vote against them with my dollars.

      I've always been a big tesla fan, and have been eagerly awaiting the Model 3, for which I've put down a $1000 deposit and have a good spot in the reservation line.

      But as the release date approaches, I have a few questions in my mind.
      One is the tax credits - will they still be available?
      Another is tesla build quality. I've heard a lot of horror stories.
      I'm also not crazy about the M3's interior. No driver instrument cluster? That giant computer monitor? I want a high tech car, but I don't see why that means I have to have a giant screen in my face when I drive.
      Also I think they tesla supercharger network will be overwhelmed by the coming wave of teslas, meaning those long distance trips you imagine won't be possible in reality.
      I've also never bought a new car. I prefer to let someone else take the depreciation and buy it when its 2-3 years used. I'm unsure what the depreciation on the M3s will be, and I'm wondering if I'd be smarter waiting a couple years and then grabbing a used one.

      So my alternate options are a used 2014-15 volt or a used BMW i3.
      Both of these have depreciated rapidly and are much more affordable for me. In fact I could get one of each for the price of a new tesla M3.
      I test drove the i3 and loved it, as well as the interior design. I hated the exterior at first, but I've come to kind of like it.
      As for the volt, I like the old gen1 design much more than the new design, which is far more bland to me. Gen2 Looks like a an old person car or rental fleet car to me.
      I haven't test driven one yet, but I'm not expecting it to be as fun as the i3, but I know it would be much more useful, without the i3's long distance limitations, and still allow me to commute to work without using any gas.

      The other consideration is my fiance HATES the way the i3 looks. Doesn't care for the volt either, but doesn't think it's as bad as the i3. Obviously she'd rather be escorted around in a new tesla. Women and their competitive consumerism

      So I'm just here to learn more and help me make my decision by the time the Tesla M3 comes out.

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