AUSTIN -- Austin is emerging as a green leader. On Friday BMW debuted its new electric car at City Hall. The car maker picked Austin as the first U.S. city to showcase the i3.
The car is the latest in a string of electric vehicles going out on the market. Instead of gas, the vehicles run on a charge.
Austin is being recognized as a leader in the electric and hybrid market. President of BMW Austin, Steve Late, says Austin is the second largest city the U.S. in terms of registrations.
The movement is getting city support. Austin Energy has been installing charging stations citywide to accommodate the growing demand. There are now 162 stations available. Those stations, and the support of the city, lured BMW to Austin.
“Austin as you well know is on the forefront of green. It's on the forefront of emissions, on the forefront of energy. Because we are leaders in that field, BMW came and said it was such a natural to make Austin a big presence for the introduction of this car,” said Late.
Late says negotiations are underway to bring the i3 showroom to downtown Austin in the 2nd Street District. BMW officials say the demographics downtown fit their target market.
The car will go on sale in the U.S. in March 2014.