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2017 BMW i3

Small car
Crashworthiness
  • Small overlap front
  • Driver-side
    G
  • Passenger-side
  • Moderate overlap front
    G
  • Side
    G
  • Roof strength
    G
  • Head restraints & seats
    A

Crash avoidance & Mitigation
Front crash prevention
Crash avoidance rating
Advanced
with optional
equipment

Headlights
A

Child Seat Anchors (LATCH)
ease of use
A

Check for NHTSA recalls

The photos and videos shown here may be of a different model, model year or body type from the one selected. The ratings of one vehicle often apply to other models if they are built on the same platform. In addition, a test of a vehicle from one model year may apply to earlier or later model years if the vehicle hasn't been significantly redesigned.

Model year Small overlap front Moderate overlap front Side Roof strength Head restraints & seats Front crash prevention Headlights LATCH ease of use
Driver Passenger
2017
G
G
G
G
A
Crash avoidance rating
Advanced
A
A

Applies to 2017 models

Overall evaluation
G
Structure and safety cage
G
Injury measures
Head/neck
G
Chest
G
Hip/thigh
G
Lower leg/foot
G
Restraints and dummy kinematics
G
Important: Frontal crash test ratings should be compared only among vehicles of similar weight.

The BMW i3 was introduced in the 2014 model year. The car is a plug-in battery-electric vehicle with an optional 2-cylinder gasoline engine "range extender" to assist in charging the battery. The EPA city and highway values listed below are based on a comparison of the energy content of a kWh of electricity vs. a gallon of gasoline. The battery capacity and weight of the car were increased beginning with the 2017 model year.

Structure

The driver space was maintained well, with maximum intrusion of the lower interior of 6 cm at the lower hinge pillar. Upper interior intrusion measured 3-4 cm at the hinge pillar and instrument panel.

Injury measures

Measures taken from the dummy indicate a low risk of any significant injuries in a crash of this severity.

Restraints and dummy kinematics

The dummy’s movement was well controlled. Because the car was deflected off the barrier and decelerated more gradually than is typical in this test, the dummy’s head moved toward the inflated frontal airbag but never reached it before the head began to rebound. The side curtain airbag deployed and has sufficient forward coverage to protect the head from contact with side structure and outside objects. The side torso airbag also deployed.

Tested vehicle specifications

Tested vehicle 2017 BMW i3 4-door
Weight 2,926 lbs.
Side airbags front and rear head curtain airbags and front seat-mounted torso airbags
Wheelbase 101 in.
Length 158 in.
Width 70 in.
Engine Electric motor with 33-kWh lithuim-ion battery (without range extender)
EPA ratings 129 mpg city / 106 mpg highway

How this test is conducted

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CEN1627
Lower occupant compartment
Lower hinge pillar max (cm) 7
Footrest (cm) 2
Left toepan (cm) 2
Brake pedal (cm) 3
Parking brake (cm)
Rocker panel lateral average (cm) 2
Upper occupant compartment
Steering column 0
Upper hinge pillar max (cm) 3
Upper dash (cm) 4
Lower instrument panel (cm) 3

Driver injury measures

Test ID CEN1627
Head
HIC-15 47
Peak gs at hard contact no contact
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.6
Extension bending moment (Nm) 9
Maximum Nij 0.15
Chest maximum compression (mm) 27
Femur (kN)
Left 1.0
Right 0.4
Knee displacement (mm)
Left 2
Right 1
Knee-thigh-hip injury risk (%)
Left 0
Right 0
Maximum tibia index
Left 0.77
Right 0.24
Tibia axial force (kN)
Left 3.6
Right 1.2
Foot acceleration (g)
Left 49
Right 100

Applies to 2017 models

Overall evaluation
G
Structure and safety cage
G
Injury measures
Head/neck
G
Chest
G
Leg/foot, left
G
Leg/foot, right
G
Restraints and dummy kinematics
G
Important: Frontal crash test ratings should be compared only among vehicles of similar weight.

The BMW i3 was introduced in the 2014 model year. The car is a plug-in battery-electric vehicle with an optional 2-cylinder gasoline engine "range extender" to assist in charging the battery. The EPA city and highway values listed below are based on a comparison of the energy content of a kWh of electricity vs. a gallon of gasoline. The battery capacity and weight of the car were increased beginning with the 2017 model year.

Injury measures

Measures taken from the dummy indicate a low risk of any significant injuries in a crash of this severity.

Restraints and dummy kinematics

Dummy movement was well controlled. The driver side curtain airbag deployed during the crash. After the dummy moved forward into the frontal airbag, its head contacted the side curtain airbag.

Tested vehicle specifications

Tested vehicle 2017 BMW i3 4-door
Weight 2,915 lbs.
Side airbags front and rear head curtain airbags and front seat-mounted torso airbags
Wheelbase 101 in.
Length 158 in.
Width 70 in.
Engine Electric motor with 33-kWh lithuim-ion battery (without range extender)
EPA ratings 129 mpg city / 106 mpg highway

How this test is conducted

Measures of occcupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CEF1610
Footwell intrusion
Footrest (cm) 1
Left (cm) 1
Center (cm) 2
Right (cm) 1
Brake pedal (cm) 3
Instrument panel rearward movement
Left (cm) 0
Right (cm) 0
Steering column movement
Upward (cm) -2
Rearward (cm) -7
A-pillar rearward movement (cm) 0

Driver injury measures

Test ID CEF1610
Head
HIC-15 209
Peak gs at hard contact no contact
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.9
Extension bending moment (Nm) 13
Maximum Nij 0.23
Chest maximum compression (mm) 34
Legs
Femur force - left (kN) 0.4
Femur force - right (kN) 0.9
Knee displacement - left (mm) 2
Knee displacement - right (mm) 3
Maximum tibia index - left 0.27
Maximum tibia index - right 0.42
Tibia axial force - left (kN) 2.1
Tibia axial force - right (kN) 2.2
Foot acceleration (g)
Left 72
Right 64

Applies to 2017 models

Overall evaluation
G
Structure and safety cage
G
Driver injury measures
Head/neck
G
Torso
G
Pelvis/leg
G
Head protection
G
Rear passenger injury measures
Head/neck
G
Torso
G
Pelvis/leg
G
Head protection
G
Side crash test ratings can be compared across vehicle categories.

The BMW i3 was introduced in the 2014 model year. The car is a plug-in battery-electric vehicle with an optional 2-cylinder gasoline engine "range extender" to assist in charging the battery. The EPA city and highway values listed below are based on a comparison of the energy content of a kWh of electricity vs. a gallon of gasoline. The battery capacity and weight of the car were increased beginning with the 2017 model year.

Injury measures

Driver — Measures taken from the dummy indicate a low risk of any significant injuries in a crash of this severity.

Passenger — Measures taken from the dummy indicate a low risk of any significant injuries in a crash of this severity.

Head protection

Driver — The dummy’s head was protected from being hit by any hard structures, including the intruding barrier, by a side curtain airbag that deployed from the roof and a side airbag that deployed from the seat.

Passenger — The dummy’s head was protected from being hit by any hard structures, including the intruding barrier, by a side curtain airbag that deployed from the roof.

Tested vehicle specifications

Tested vehicle 2017 BMW i3 4-door
Weight 2,906 lbs.
Side airbags standard front and rear head curtain airbags and standard front seat-mounted torso airbags
Wheelbase 101 in.
Length 158 in.
Width 70 in.
Engine Electric motor with 33-kWh lithuim-ion battery (without range extender)
EPA ratings 129 mpg city / 106 mpg highway

How this test is conducted

Measures of occupant compartment intrusion on driver side

Test ID CES1614
B-pillar to longitudinal centerline of driver's seat (cm)
Negative numbers indicate the amount by which the crush stopped short of the seat centerline.
-16.0

Driver injury measures

Test ID CES1614
Head HIC-15 264
Neck
Tension (kN) 1.7
Compression (kN) 0.2
Shoulder
Lateral deflection (mm) 24
Lateral force (kN) 1.2
Torso
Maximum deflection (mm) 36
Average deflection (mm) 32
Maximum deflection rate (m/s) 4.31
Maximum viscous criterion (m/s) 0.53
Pelvis
Iliac force (kN) 1.4
Acetabulum force (kN) 2.6
Combined force (kN) 4.0
Left femur
L-M force (kN) 1.3
L-M moment (Nm) 105
A-P moment (Nm) 22

Passenger injury measures

Test ID CES1614
Head HIC-15 319
Neck
Tension (kN) 0.4
Compression (kN) 0.4
Shoulder
Lateral deflection (mm) 45
Lateral force (kN) 1.8
Torso
Maximum deflection (mm) 39
Average deflection (mm) 24
Maximum deflection rate (m/s) 3.74
Maximum viscous criterion (m/s) 0.78
Pelvis
Iliac force (kN) 2.8
Acetabulum force (kN) 1.7
Combined force (kN) 4.2
Left femur
L-M force (kN) 0.9
L-M moment (Nm) 102
A-P moment (Nm) 54

Applies to 2017 models

Overall evaluation
G
Curb weight 2,920 lbs
Peak force 13,772 lbs
Strength-to-weight ratio 4.72
Tested vehicle
2017 BMW i3 4-door
Roof strength test ratings can be compared across vehicle categories.

In the test, the strength of the roof is determined by pushing a metal plate against one side of it at a slow but constant speed. The force applied relative to the vehicle's weight is known as the strength-to-weight ratio. This graph shows how the ratio varied as the test of this vehicle progressed. The peak strength-to-weight ratio recorded at any time before the roof is crushed 5 inches is the key measurement of roof strength.

A good rating requires a strength-to-weight ratio of at least 4. In other words, the roof must withstand a force of at least 4 times the vehicle's weight before the plate crushes the roof by 5 inches. For an acceptable rating, the minimum required strength-to-weight ratio is 3.25. For a marginal rating, it is 2.5. Anything lower than that is poor.

How this test is conducted

Applies to 2017 models

Overall evaluation
A
Dynamic rating
A
Seat/head restraint geometry
G
Important: Ratings for head restraints & seats should be compared only among vehicles of similar weight.

Seat type

Manual cloth seat

How this test is conducted

Seat type Manual cloth seat
Geometry
Backset (mm) 15
Distance below top of head (mm) -4
Seat design parameters
Pass/fail Fail
Max T1 acceleration (g) 13.3
Head contact time (ms) 76
Force rating 1
Neck forces
Max neck shear force (N) 5
Max neck tension (N) 561

Applies to 2017 models

System details

  • Optional Frontal Collision Warning with City Collision Mitigation

Package name

  • Optional Technology + Driving Assistant Package

Overall evaluation

Crash avoidance rating
Advanced
with optional
equipment
3 points total

Forward collision warning

This system meets the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's criteria for forward collision warning.
1 point

Low-speed autobrake

In the 12 mph IIHS test, impact speed was reduced by 9 mph.
1 point

High-speed autobrake

In the 25 mph IIHS test, impact speed was reduced by 7 mph.
1 point

Tested vehicle

2017 BMW i3 4-door

How this rating is determined

Trim level(s)
  • All trims
Low-beam headlight type LED projector
High-beam headlight type Halogen reflector
Curve-adaptive? Yes
Automatically switches between low beams and high beams (high-beam assist)? No
Overall rating
A
Distance at which headlights provide at least 5 lux illumination:
car-simpler car-simpler car-simpler car-simpler car-simpler 0 ft 100 ft 200 ft 300 ft 400 ft 500 ft 600 ft Low beams Optimal low-beam illumination High beams Optimal high-beam illumination

Low beams

On the straightaway, visibility was good on both sides of the road. On curves, visibility was good on the gradual right curve and fair on the sharp right and both left curves.

The low beams never exceeded glare limits.

High beams

On the straightaway, visibility was good on the right side of the road and inadequate on the left side. On curves, visibility was fair on both right curves and inadequate on both left curves.

How this test is conducted

Trim level(s)
  • All trims
Low-beam headlight type LED projector
High-beam headlight type Halogen reflector
Curve-adaptive? Yes
High-beam assist? No
Overall rating
Applies to 2017 models
A
LOW BEAMS Average minimum useful
illumination distance (5 lux)
Amount glare
exceeded threshold
Straightaway right edge 102.9 m None
Straightaway left edge 55.4 m None
250m radius right curve, right edge 67.8 m None
250m radius left curve, left edge 55.4 m None
150m radius right curve, right edge 54.5 m None
150m radius left curve, left edge 48.6 m None
HIGH BEAMS Average minimum useful
illumination distance (5 lux)
Straightaway right edge 156.4 m
Straightaway left edge 112.0 m
250m radius right curve, right edge 71.6 m
250m radius left curve, left edge 63.9 m
150m radius right curve, right edge 56.4 m
150m radius left curve, left edge 52.7 m

Applies to 2017 models

How this rating is determined

Overall evaluation

A
Vehicle trim base
Seat type cloth

This vehicle has 2 rear seating positions with complete child seat attachment (LATCH) hardware.

1 3


Good
Acceptable
Marginal
Poor
Seating positions that rely on borrowed lower anchors or have only a tether anchor available are not rated.
Tether anchor
Lower anchors
Lower anchor(s) can be borrowed from adjacent positions(s)
No hardware available

Details by seating position

1
Tether anchor
easy-to-find location
other hardware could be confused for anchor
Lower anchors
not too deep in seat
not too much force needed to attach
difficult to maneuver around anchors
3
Tether anchor
easy-to-find location
other hardware could be confused for anchor
Lower anchors
not too deep in seat
not too much force needed to attach
difficult to maneuver around anchors

Seat position 21

3
Lower anchor A
Open access rated Yes
Depth Visible
Force (lbs) 0
Clearance angle (degrees) 46
Lower anchor B
Open access rated Yes
Depth Visible
Force (lbs) 0
Clearance angle (degrees) 46
Tether anchor
Location Middle seatback
Confusing hardware present Yes
Has contrasting label
within 3 inches of tether anchor
No

Seat position 23

1
Lower anchor A
Open access rated Yes
Depth Visible
Force (lbs) 0
Clearance angle (degrees) 44
Lower anchor B
Open access rated Yes
Depth Visible
Force (lbs) 0
Clearance angle (degrees) 46
Tether anchor
Location Middle seatback
Confusing hardware present Yes
Has contrasting label
within 3 inches of tether anchor
No
1
Side airbags: front and rear head curtain airbags and front seat-mounted torso airbags
2
Rollover sensor: designed to deploy the side curtain airbags in the event of an impending rollover
3
Driver and front passenger knee airbags: separate airbags in the lower instrument panel designed to minimize knee injuries in frontal crashes
4
Electronic stability control
5
Antilock brakes
6
Programmable daytime running lights

©1996-2016, Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute | www.iihs.org