If you're looking to jump on the latest advanced powertrain bandwagon, it won't be all that expensive: the BMW ActiveE is going on lease this fall for $499 per month on a 24 month contract with $2,250 due at signing. Only 700 will be available, so competition for the cars will be fierce.
The ActiveE lease program is also only coming to New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramento, and Boston, plus some in Connecticut, so if you're not in one of those places, you're out of luck. Don't fret too much, however, as the data gleaned in this test program will be used to inform development of the i3, the production Mega City Vehicle, due in 2013, so by the time the leases are up, you'll be able to get a bonafide BMW EV with no strings attached.
In the mean time, the lucky lessees will enjoy a 1-Series-based EV good for 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, 0-60 mph in less than 9 seconds, and about 100 miles of range on a charge.