2019 Hyundai Nexo vs. 2019 BMW i3

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Hyundai Nexo are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW i3 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

The Nexo’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The i3 doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Nexo has a standard Limited to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The i3 only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

To help make backing safer, the Nexo’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The i3 doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

The Nexo’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The i3 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Nexo and the i3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

The Hyundai Nexo weighs 712 to 1155 pounds more than the BMW i3. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty

The Nexo comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The i3’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.

Hyundai’s powertrain warranty covers the Nexo 6 years and 50,000 miles longer than BMW covers the i3. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the i3 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 2 times as many Hyundai dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Nexo’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai third in initial quality, above the industry average. With 13 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 11th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai 6th in reliability, above the industry average. With 3 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 8th.

Engine

The Nexo’s electric motor produces 107 lbs.-ft. more torque (291 vs. 184) than the i3’s standard electric motor. The Nexo’s electric motor produces 92 lbs.-ft. more torque (291 vs. 199) than the i3s’ standard electric motor.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Hyundai Nexo higher (10 out of 10) than the BMW i3 REx (7). This means the Nexo produces up to 11.8 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the i3 every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Nexo’s brake rotors are larger than those on the i3:

 

Nexo

i3

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

11 inches

Rear Rotors

11.9 inches

11 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Nexo has larger standard tires than the i3 (225/60R17 vs. 155/70R19). The Nexo Limited’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the i3 (245/45R19 vs. 175/55R20).

The Nexo’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the i3’s standard 70 series tires. The Nexo Limited’s tires have a lower 45 series profile than the i3s’ 55 series front and 50 series rear tires.

Suspension and Handling

The Nexo has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The i3’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Nexo has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Nexo flat and controlled during cornering. The i3’s suspension doesn’t offer stabilizer bars.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Nexo’s wheelbase is 8.6 inches longer than on the i3 (109.8 inches vs. 101.2 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Nexo is 1.6 inches wider in the front and 1.7 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the i3.

Passenger Space

The Nexo has standard seating for 5 passengers; the i3 can only carry 4.

The Nexo has 17.7 cubic feet more passenger volume than the i3 (101.3 vs. 83.6).

The Nexo has 1 inch more front legroom, 3.6 inches more front shoulder room, .8 inches more rear headroom, 6.7 inches more rear legroom and 6.3 inches more rear shoulder room than the i3.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Nexo’s rear seats recline. The i3’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, just waiting momentarily behind the back bumper can open the Nexo Limited’s power liftgate, leaving your hands completely free. The Nexo’s power liftgate can also be opened or closed by pressing a button. The i3 doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening trunk.

Ergonomics

The Nexo has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The i3 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Nexo’s standard power windows have a locking feature to keep children in the rear seat from operating them. BMW does not offer a locking feature on the i3’s standard power windows.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Nexo detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The i3 doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Nexo has standard extendable sun visors. The i3 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Nexo Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The i3 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the Nexo Limited’s standard heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The i3 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The Nexo has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable. The i3 doesn’t offer a rear seat center armrest.

The Nexo’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The i3 doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

The Nexo has a 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The i3 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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