LAPD Goes Green by Adding 100 BMW i3 Electric Cars to Its Fleet
Every day, the department of National Security strives to ensure that every citizen is protected and that law and order is maintained at all cost. What better way to do it than to provide the police with fast and effective vehicles to aid them in the line of duty. The Los Angeles Police Department recently added 100 BMW i3 EV’s to its fleet, making it a green law enforcement agency in the US. This was confirmed by Los Angeles City mayor, Eric Garcetti and LAPD Chief Charlie Beck who drove to City Hall in a BMW i3 to make the announcement. LAPD now boasts of a 199 fleet of vehicles.
However, the cars will be used for administrative and departmental tasks; community outreach service and transportation of officers around the city and surroundings. However, it will not be used for street chase, according to BMW’s press release details.
But Why BMW
BMW of North America had been contracted to produce EV’s for LAPD alongside the giant EV maker, Tesla Motors. However, BMW i3 showed its supremacy in a number of field trials beating Tesla Motors, Model S P85D, for its drive efficiency, reliability and convertibility. The Los Angeles City mayor also admitted that BMW had undergone a competitive bidding process before finally settling on it.
The BMW i3 also comes with a short wheelbase and tight turning radius. This makes the car an excellent option when it comes to navigating around the crowded streets of Los Angeles. In addition, its compact size, zero emission and quietness brings the BWW’s operating and maintenance cost down.
BMW i3 was also cheap in terms of purchase cost, compared to Model S. For example, i3 started at $43,395 while Model S went for around $90,000. This is under half of what Tesla’s EV cost. However, LAPD motor transport division head, Vartan Yegiyan confirmed that the i3s would be leased on $387 per month, attracting a $1.4 million, maintenance and repairs inclusive for all the 100 EVs, for a period of 3 years.
In order to easily manage its fleet, BMW’s software data system will be integrated with LAPD’s fleet management system so as to electronically receive important critical vehicle data. In addition, BMW is also keen on developing a web tool that will enable LAPD to keep track of their fleet using real time data, easing police and vehicle deployment during emergencies.
Greenlots, the global provider of open standards based distributed energy resource solutions based in California has been contracted to supply 100 Level 2 chargers and four direct current chargers in LAPD’s parking lot. With the Level 2 chargers, it will take about 3 hours and 30 minutes to attain a full charge. DC fast chargers can charge the i3 up to 80 percent in under 20 minutes. The budget for the installation of the over 100 chargers is set to be $1.5 million.
In addition to this, the i3s will be integrated to a large network of BMWs in the US. The centres dubbed, “i Centres” are set to offer maintenance and repair services to the electric vehicles.
About BMW i3
The i3 is the dedicated and forward looking range extender model, set to solve mobility challenges facing the SUV sector. It constructed and designed from a wide range of recycled and renewable raw materials and a resource efficient production techniques. Its construction entails the use of light weight Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic (CFRP), offering a tight turning radius and agility needed for a green vehicle used in transportation.
Its hybrid synchronous electric motor weights about 184 pounds, producing a power of 170 hp. It’s electrified by a 22 kWh lithium ion battery pack placed on the floor to offer enough space in the car’s interior. When fully charged, drivers can enjoy between 80 to 100 miles of zero emission driving, making the car suitable for urban or city movement.
BMW Group in America
BMW of North America set base in the US in 1975 and has grown over the decades, producing its BMW brand of vehicles and motorcycles. The motorcycles are used by a number of police departments in the US and its rumoured that this played part in sealing the deal between LAPD and BMW. It has spread its roots in the US by decentralising its strategic design plant, Design works in California, technology office in Silicon Valley and manufacturing plant in South Carolina. Its group sales headquarters in America is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.