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Plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) owners can enjoy electric and gas-powered propulsion benefits. Many consumers who aren’t ready for a fully-electric vehicle (EV) can find a good balance with a PHEV. One of the best parts about modern PHEVs is the ability to drive on electric power alone. However, only the BMW i3 REx can drive 100 miles or more with EV-only range. 

Which PHEV has the longest EV-only range? 

The plug-hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) with the most extended EV-only range is the little BMW i3 REx. The little BMW features a practical hatchback design, if a little silly that the front doors need to be opened to access the rear doors. Still, the utility and badge are not the most enticing characteristic of the i3. 

The BMW i3, here in London, is the only PHEV that will drive more than 100 miles on EV-only range.
A BMW i3 in London | BMW

How far can the BMW i3 REx drive with EV-only range? 

The BMW i3 is capable of 153 miles of EV-only range, but the PHEV version, the REx, will cover 124 miles of electric-only travel. According to U.S. News, the 2019 model year brought the range up to 153 miles from 114 miles of electric-only range for the EV. Still, equipping the BMW i3 with the range extender (REx) will result in fewer electric-only miles but extends the overall range to 200 miles.

Is the BMW i3 REx the only PHEV with 100 miles of electric-only range? 

The BMW i3 REx is the only PHEV with over 100 miles of EV-only range. However, the term PHEV is applied liberally to the i3 REx. The little BMW features a 600cc two-cylinder engine to extend the range and get you back on the road. An engine that small pales in comparison to other PHEV gas-powered engines, like the 2.0L engine in the Volvo S60 Recharge.

Do any other PHEVs come close to the BMW i3 and its 100+ miles of EV-only range?

No other PHEV currently on the market comes close to 100 miles of electric-only range. According to InsideEVs, the closest contender in electric-only range is the Karma GS-6. The GS-6 sports 61 miles of EV-only range, putting it way off the mark set by the BMW. Still, getting your hands on a 2021 example may cost over $80,000, quite a bit more than the roughly $25,000 you should expect to spend on the BMW PHEV.

Another PHEV contender is the Polestar 1, a $155,000 luxury car. According to InsideEVs, the Polestar 1 will travel 52 miles of EV-only range. However convenient and comfortable the Polestar is, it’s way off of the electric-only range of the BMW i3 REx. That, and it will cost you around five or six times more to snag a Polestar 1 over a BMW i3. 

The BMW i3 REx is the only PHEV that can drive more than 100 miles with EV-only range.
BMW i3 REx | Miles Willis, Getty Images

Can you buy a BMW i3 in the United States?

You can buy a BMW i3 in the United States. The range extender may drive the used prices up, but it might be worth it, depending on your driving needs. Scroll down to the following article to read more about PHEVs. 


Buying a Plug-In Hybrid: 3 Disadvantages