During the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich, it made sense to use an experimental BMW as an escort vehicle for long distance runners. Everybody got to breathe fresh air and BMW got some nice PR. Four decades later the i3 arrived, but this was the original electric BMW.
If you ever come across the opportunity to drive one of BMW's Neue Klasse (New Class) cars, you need to seize it. Even 50 years after they first debuted they're just as good as you've heard, if not better.
While it seems like BMW is struggling a bit with its polar bear saving "i" sub-brand, it is worth knowing that they started experimenting with electric power around the same time Subaru introduced it's first all-wheel drive car.