Hollywood A-listers Sienna Millar and James Franco added some genuine glamour against a stunningly fake backdrop to launch BMWs new electric car, the i3.
They really were in London, at the launch in Old Billingsgate Market, on July 29.) BMW joining the battery pack is a sign that electric cars are coming, and gaining acceptance - just so long as government grants and tax structures keep on supporting them.
The i3 is the size of an average supermini, and it's been designed from the ground up as an electric vehicle. It uses the first-ever mass produced Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) passenger cell in the automotive business, to make it strong for safety and super-light for fuel efficiency.
It's propelled by a 168bhp electric motor, which drives the rear wheels, and its vital statistics are: top speed 93mph; 0-62mph 7.2 seconds.
More important to potential owners, it has a range of between 80 and 100 miles in normal driving — more in the Eco Pro modes. For those needing occasional longer runs, a range-extender version of the car includes a 34bhp two-cylinder petrol engine to charge up the battery pack. (The car is still always driven by the electric motor.)
Once you've plugged in your i3, a full charge takes eight hours, so it's ideal if you can leave it to charge overnight ready for short commutes during the day. Public charging stations are growing in number, but even fast chargers take 15-20 minutes.
Realistically the all-electric i3 would make a great second car. I would suit me fine, I could drop hubby at the station, do the shopping and collect him most days, but take the other car for longer trips.
It costs £30,680, but the Government chips in £5000, taking the cost down to £25,680; comparable to a top-of the range Nissan Leaf, but around £10k more than a Renault Zoe. BMW's i Wallbox, can be installed at your home for an additional £315.
To take away the concern about the life of the battery, BMW offers a lease deal. It will also offer some days in a conventional vehicle.