Road trip to Oregon aboard a BMW i8May 18, 2017
A journey through the years need not be a prosaic one, make room for personal indulgences and dreams, dreams that are to be chased and dreams that are to be realized. If one day you’re fortunate enough to peer out the window of reality at what was once a personal dream, dream again and chase…
Our 2014 Electronaut BMW i8 is both a realized dream as plug in and solar pv pioneers and a personal indulgence. In a few days, we’re taking SUNGAS 1 on a road trip from San Diego to Oregon that will connect us to a new dream for our future as we think about and drive a very different vehicle architecture, one that’s slotted between a 300 lbs motorcycle and a 3,500 lbs car, one that I think has the potential to change our world as we shift to drivers being optional.
Wine in Napa and the Willamette Valley are a big part of the itinerary; after all we’re dreaming here and what better than wine to help that dream. It’s damn hard work to be a pioneer.
A BMW Isetta? No, it’s not a three wheel micro car, it’s not even a car. BMW does give us a solid hint via its Motorrad division and the BMW C1, with the incredible fun and enjoyment of the openness of the road that heretofore only a motorcycle could provide. So think of the ultimate electric platform, soon to be an autonomous platform, a stable, affordable three wheeled motorcycle platform crossed with a “Dash of DNA” from the BMW Isetta and the BMW C1 to get a picture of what is soon to be in our garage.
Funny, Julie won’t allow me to ride a motorcycle, but she likes the idea of the Arcimoto SRK. www.arcimoto.com that should tell you something about the future acceptance of this vehicle architecture.
The past nearly three years with our 2014 BMW i8 has been a love affair of an automotive sort. Logic does not drive the mood or decisions with the i8, passion with an eye towards the future does. It’s emotional not rational. A walk past the i8, static in the garage as I get in my daily driver, the BMW i3, still provides a thrill, a slight shudder of thought that life is grand and that Julie and I have worked extremely hard and are fortunate. That feeling will be there for the next 30 years as I grow old with SUNGAS 1.
I imagine myself as an 85 year old with a cane needing a bit of help to get in and out of my old classic BMW i8 with Julie. Now that’s a vision of how to grow old properly.
Many of the first year 2014 BMW i8s life a life in the garage as queens and collectibles a valuable prized torch carrier for BMW i towards the future that dare not collect miles at the expense of their value in the future collectors market. Pffff! Great cars are not meant for safe garages. We purposely chose to drive our BMW i8 touching the emotions and all the senses of life to the fullest when in the cockpit. It’s both the various personalities of the car, the broadest range I have ever experienced in any car from electric, slow, silent and sultry when approaching a favorite restaurant or hotel, to full throat AWD nastiness on a favored piece of asphalt, as well as the various personalities of those who approach the car in awe that are so special to us.
From the kids who ask “is that from the future” to foam Minions objectionably bouncing off the car working for photo tips on the Vegas strip, thousands of drunk people at midnight who won’t let you pass when the light turns green because you have a car from the future and they’re blitzed, nothing can go wrong there…thank goodness for alert valets.
It’s not a typical duty life (there is nothing typical at all) for our BMW i8 as our daily drivers are our i3’s. The BMW i8 essentially leads two lives in our garage. One is as a weekend driver around coastal North San Diego County in full electric mode visiting our favorite diner houses and watering holes as our region has 120 micro breweries and 110 boutique wineries. The other is as our long road trip car, in this the BMW i8 is exceptional, exciting as hell and well mannered when not rampaging, as a grand touring car for two.
Each drive no mater how short or how long has a little blip of the shift lever to the left and insane momentary fun before returning to a life led by most cars. Each drive involves receiving a thumbs up, a wave, a picture, shaka or other expression…I try to be welcoming and generous with both my time and the car.
We’ve put 18,500 mile on the odometer the past 33 months. 10,000 the first year, 6000 the second and were on track for 5000, for the third. Of the total miles approximately 12,000 are on various great road trips across several states averaging 30mpg and 6,500 are local miles averaging 65 mpg with an overall average of 40mpg. No mechanical issues at all, the doors are amazingly simple in their CFRP construction and single exposed strut and show no reason why they wont be solid for the life of the car with a strut replacement I’m sure sometime in the future.
As a BMW i8 driver I can certainly afford the gas but that’s not the point. The BMW i8 is over two times more efficient than its class competitors and what I/we can’t afford is twice the emissions and pollution. BRAVO BMW!
With two BMW i3’s and the BMW i8, our emissions have been reduced 90% and sunshine is our primary fuel. This is the path towards the higher performance, lower emissions and strengthened family budgets in our future. Worry not my petrol BMW friends, electricity generated by sunshine and driving electric is insane and sane at the same time. Crazy, I know.
There’s always a place for cars made for emotions, alongside the cars made for everyone. The stories are different for each and the life of the lucky drivers are different as well. Never forget this BMW!
What a fantastic car to grow my kind of old with.