Our i3 was one of the first delivered and it is now five years ago the first post about the new shiny revolution was published on this web site. The i3 has served us well and there has not been any major issues. Until now.When trying to leave for work a morning last week, the only sign of life the i3 wanted to give was “Drivetrain. Stop carefully”. The BMW engineers are not generous with information. Imagine a computer that had a similar error message – it would not be acceptable. Also, the part “stop carefully” is interesting when the car is just started. The light was red and the car refused to go anywhere. It was not even possible to put in a gear.
As always, first some advice was searched from i3 blog publishers, forum writers, and the like. Possibly the error could stem from condensation, so I decided to use the Connected app to schedule a departure four hours later with preconditioning turned on. This way I was sure it would also warm up the battery and maybe condensation would go away. No avail. Same error message.
After discussing with the BMW workshop, it was clear that tow truck was the only option. First a large tow truck came but it was too big to manoeuvre into the villa driveway. A couple of hours later there were two tow trucks outside – one small to pull the i3 into the larger street and a large that could lift it to a flatbed. Here the disadvantage of a construction that prohibits the i3 from being towed after another car becomes very apparent. Had it been a normal car I could have towed it myself to the workshop but with the i3 it requires large and expensive equipment. That said, I believe everything is covered by BMW Mobile Care.
The i3 has now been at the workshop for more than a week. Despite several calls there has not yet been any analysis from BMW what caused the error nor any plans how to fix it. I keep you updated.