BMW i3- Electric Shocks

Hola Onto Crew…
I have a general question, Has anyone been experiencing static shocks from the BMW i3?
In the last week when getting out the car and closing the door, on touching the door i get a static shock. Problem is i know its coming now so fear touching the door!
Is this normal or do i have a problem with the car or my highly charged body :laughing:

I think I did once or twice. Just part of the fun of running an i3!

(Can happen with many cars and I think it usually results form static charge building up from seat fabric and clothing)


You must have an electric personality :joy:

There can be quite a bit that can build up a static charge in the air -
I was going to say that it could be the gusty wind through your likely longer than normal hair due to lockdown, but then I saw your avatar and feel like that might be barking up the wrong tree! :laughing:

An obvious one, but have you recently changed the types of clothes or shoes that you have been wearing? It can often be the human body which is highly charged and discharging to earth through the car, rather than the other way round. :zap: :zap: :zap: :zap:

I’m pleased to say the i3 doesn’t, but my old Peugeot iOn used to all the time. I eventually learned that I could stop it by grabbing a metal part of the door and holding that the whole time as I got out of the car and stood onto the ground. I’m not sure how that made a difference but it fixed that for me!

@Tyson longer than usual hair… :roll_eyes: bald as a badger me… haha
@burnt_crisps2 so it’s one of those “it’s me, not you” sort of situations… now why can’t I harness that charge back in to the car!!
@Koda when I get home I’m going to make a tinfoil hat to wear whilst driving to see it that help :sweat_smile:
At least I now know its not the car trying to kill me

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That works because the car and you are at the same ‘potential voltage’.
The ‘shock’ that we feel is the voltage equalising between 2 objects at different potentials.
The act of getting out of a car involves twisting on the seat which is often what charges up a human, especially fabric seats. I have some trainers which are terrific insulators, so allow me to get charged up and then zapped. In hospitals, the theatre team wear conductive clogs so they dissipate any static charge continually. Reason being oxygen explodes with a good zap, so best not get charged up as likely to kill the patients and staff. :open_mouth:


Used to happen to me in the i3 all the time when leaving the car and touching the side door to close. I think it was mainly during warmer summer months. Developed a slight fear from touching the car tbh.
Now that I have the IONIQ the issue has dissapeared. So definitely something up with the i3.

It will happen more when the air is less humid. Perhaps there is also something about the i3 seat fabric, coupled with the jiggly nature of the ride quality, that means during a drive clothing gets rubbed against the seats more than in most other cars and that increases the likelihood of enough static being generated to cause a shock.

Maybe Onto should start fitting these! :laughing:

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Probably because it’s not a metal body car, instead using carbon fibre reinforced polymer and the polymer is likely what is causing a static build up. Having said that the carbon should help dissipate the charge. Odd looking car with odd characteristics :roll_eyes:

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