A fleet of electric vehicles is making its way to the Los Angeles Police Department, but the cars are not coming from Tesla Motors.

It was announced on June 8 that the BMW i3 was chosen over the Tesla Model S after the LAPD spent a year testing and evaluating several electric models on the streets of L.A.

But why didn't the Tesla Model S make the final cut? Here are just three reasons the BMW i3 bested Elon Musk's creation:

'Best in Class'

According to BMW, the LAPD selected the i3 for a combination of reasons. These include the fact that the EV is rated best in class for its efficiency and reliability. The BMW i3 also has state-of-the-art ConnectedDrive services, which the LAPD can use for various applications.

BMW will also be developing a custom web tool so that officers can track and manage the EVs in real-time centrally.

The Switch to Green

As part of the contact, BMW will supply 100 of its electric plugin i3 vehicles to the LAPD with a three-year lease, bringing the total number of EVs in the LAPD fleet to 168. The contract is part of L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti's "Sustainable City pLAn," which has the goal of having half of the city's vehicles be electric by 2017.

"Every sector should be migrating to green technology — and these new EVs show how local government can lead," Garcetti said in a blog post. "Our sustainability plan pushes L.A. to speed adoption of greener practices and technologies, which also save money and resources."

More Affordable Than Tesla

Price could also be a major factor in the decision to choose the i3 over the Model S. The i3 starts at just a little more than $42,000. Telsa's discontinued Model S P85D, which the LAPD began testing last year, started at more than $100,000.

In a Los Angeles Times report, the BMWs were said to be leased for $387 a month, with the three-year lease on the 100 i3s costing the LAPD a total of approximately $1.4 million. This includes any maintenance and repairs.

The electric vehicle management company Greenlots will help install 104 Level 2 chargers and four DC Fast Charge Stations — which can fully charge the EV in less than an hour — around the city.

"Electric vehicle procurement made sense for taxpayers and for the environment," said LAPD Chief Charlie Beck. "The charging stations we bought will power many more electric vehicles in the future, for much less than the price of gas. Every dollar we save from lower maintenance will go back into law enforcement to keep our city safe."

The Drawback?

Even still, the Tesla model, which is stronger and faster, might have seemed like a better fit for police chases. The Model S can go up to about 300 miles, whereas the i3 can go only between 80 and 100 on a single electric charge.

But it doesn't really matter how fast the i3 is compared to the Model S because the cars will not serve as pursuit vehicles or even to patrol the streets. Instead, the EVs will be used as transportation for officers during community outreach and other official police business.

With the new fleet of 100 EVs, L.A. now has the largest fully battery-powered municipal fleet in the U.S.

Source: BMW

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