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BMW pulls wraps off i3 electric car

Monday - 7/29/2013, 5:02pm  ET

Reporters crowd the new BMWi3 electric vehicle (EV) at its unveiling on Monday, July 29, 2013 in New York. The unveiling marks BMW's official entry into the EV market with an electrically driven city car designed from the ground up to be as eco-friendly as possible. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
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FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) -- BMW AG is showing off the production model of its new i3 electric compact that uses carbon-fiber materials to keep the weight down and improve driving performance.

CEO Norbert Reithofer stressed at a New York unveiling that the car was designed as an electric from the ground up. The i3 is "born electric," he said.

The company says the i3, built in Leipzig, Germany, will go from zero to 100kph (zero to 62 mph) in 7.2 seconds. Its range is billed as 130-160 kilometers (80-100 miles). Models with an optional range extender gas engine can go as far as 300 kilometers (200 miles.)

The car goes on sale in November in Germany and other European markets starting at 34,950 euros ($46,000) and reaches the U.S., Japan and China next year.


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