Pour one out for the beloved BMW i3. After an impressive eight-and-a-half-year run with a quarter of a million units sold in 74 different countries, the tiny hybrid hatchback is being discontinued. Inevitably the i3 will make way for a new pure electric crossover slotted underneath the iX, dubbed the iX1, but not before BMW sends off this icon in style.
During a special delivery ceremony at the BMW Welt facility in Munich, Germany, the automaker lined up the final 18 examples of the i3 for a handful of lucky customers to take home. Each car sported the same Galvanic Gold and black finish as a tribute to the i3’s longstanding success.
“At the start of its series production eight and a half years ago, it was considered a visionary and exotic,” BMW said in a statement. “Since then, the compact vehicle with electric drive has established itself as a pioneer for locally emission-free driving pleasure and holistic sustainability.”
BMW ended production of the i3 in the US in 2021, before making the announcement official on a global scale this year. The high-riding hatchback hit the market in 2013, offering electric driving ranges of between 81 miles (130 kilometers) and 153 miles (246 kilometers) throughout its production run.
All told, BMW sold more than 250,000 examples of the i3 worldwide, which makes it the automaker’s most successful electrified vehicle to date in terms of pure sales, and one of the most successful EVs of all time.
Technically, the BMW i3 name does live on in China in the form of a battery-electric 3 Series sedan, and soon, the US will see a replacement for the small hatchback in the iX1 crossover. But the i3 as we know it has officially reached the end of the line, and it will be missed.