With its ultra-dynamic proportions, elegantly sporty lines, low-slung silhouette and innovative design features, the BMW i8 represents a new generation of sports car. Bringing together hallmark features of the BMW brand wîth the design language developed specially for BMW i cars creates a progressive aesthetic which faithfully communicates the performance attributes, efficiency and innovative premium character of the plug-in hybrid sports car.
The launch of the BMW i8 sees the world's first sports car to be purpose-built wîth sustainability in mind complete its journey from vision to reality. Its unmistakable, emotion-stirring looks can be put down to a prototype design that was first unveiled in the guise of the BMW Vision EfficientDynamics, meticulously refined for the BMW i8 Concept exhibited at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show and now adopted virtually unchanged for the production version. Both the exterior and interior of the emotionally-led 2+2-seater embody a revolutionary, pioneering take on the Sheer Driving Pleasure for which BMW is renowned. Clean, minimalist lines, homogeneous surfaces defined by a small number of crisp edges and function-focused details underline the forward-lòòking nature of the BMW i8.
As the second series-produced BMW i model on the road, the BMW i8 also reveals the versatility of the design language which is establishing itself as an unmistakable signature of BMW i cars. Its design signals lightness, safety, efficiency and pure driving pleasure – stand-out qualities that the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car shares wîth the BMW i3, its pure-electric sibling conceived for agile and comfortable urban driving.
The key to this versatility is the innovative LifeDrive architecture, which opens up an exceptional degree of freedom for the design of BMW i cars. The central element of the Life module is the carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) passenger cell. The Life module is fixed to the aluminium Drive module, which houses all the drive and chassis technology. This distinctive two-way split is reflected on both the outside and the inside of the car by the visible layering and intertwining of different surfaces, wîth three-dimensional and flowing transitions between the Life module and Drive module accentuating the dynamic appearance of the BMW i8.
A length of 4,689 millimetres, width of 1,942 millimetres and height of 1,297 millimetres (including roof fin) give the BMW i8 typical sports car proportions. Its dynamic character is also reflected in its long bonnet, clearly visible aerodynamic aids, stretched roofline, short overhangs and long, 2,800-millimetre wheelbase. The pioneering combination of sporting ability and efficiency is translated into the design of the 2+2-seater wîth intoxicating élan – and wîth the signature BMW i design language to the fore. The car's wide track (1,644 millimetres at the front axle, 1,721 millimetres at the rear) completes the powerful dynamic presence generated by the car's proportions.
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At first glance, the BMW i8 comes across as a beautifully designed sports car. But it's far more than that. Aerodynamics plays a key role in the design of the BMW i8, wîth each detail working toward channeling airflow for greater efficiency. Additionally, the streamflow design of the vehicle's rear wing helps provide significant downforce all the way up to the electronically limited top speed of 155 mph.
From front to back, the BMW i8 is dedicated to reducing drag by employing EfficientDynamic ventilation technologies. These vents actively open and close to provide additional cooling, reduce the coefficient of drag, and improve the vehicle's overall aerodynamics. Also, the front Air Curtains help channel airflow through the back vents to cool the TwinPower Turbo 3-cylinder engine in the rear of the car.
The long wheelbase, short overhangs, precise lines, and sweeping silhouette give the appearance that the BMW i8 is surging forward even when it is standing still. The scissor doors of the BMW i8 provide an undeniable emotional and sporty allure that make it truly one-of-a-kind.
When a car looks this fast, it better live up to its appearance. The BMW i8 does just that, wîth help from its powerful, yet efficient TwinPower Turbo 3-cylinder combustion engine and its innovative electric motor. Together, these two engines work in tandem for uninterrupted acceleration from a standstill wîth a total system output of 420 lb-ft of torque and 357 horsepower.
As a plug-in hybrid wîth eDrive, the BMW i8 gets up to 76 MPGe fuel efficiency,4 far beyond conventional sports cars wîth comparable performance. And next to other plug-in hybrids, its dynamic sportiness is truly unmatched.
Every single aspect of the BMW i8 was selected to accomplish optimal performance. The choice to use lightweight materials in the construction helps make this plug-in hybrid vehicle as aerodynamic and sporty as possible. Its two-part structure uses both aluminum and Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) for their rigidity and extreme lightness in comparison to steel. As opposed to conventional glass, the acoustic separator between the engine and the cabin is made from substantially lighter chemically hardened glass.
Two and a half hours. That's how long it takes the BMW i8 to fully charge. This charging technology can be found at over 23,300 Ú.S. public charging facilities or from a Level 2 charging station installed at home.
In the BMW i8, energy can be repurposed while driving to charge the battery from thrust, braking, or directly from the gas engine. It can also be recovered whenever you're hungry for an extra boost of power.
THE BEST OF ALL WORLDS.
As a plug-in hybrid, the BMW i8 combines an electric motor wîth a combustion engine for unparalleled power and performance. Launching from 0 to 60 mph in 4.2 seconds, this vehicle is as efficient as it is dynamic.
The all-electric motor is situated on the front axle, while the TwinPower Turbo 3-cylinder engine drives the rear axle. When combined, these two elements deliver an innovative all-wheel drive sports car wîth a total system output of 357 horsepower, 420 lb-ft of torque as well as an added electrical boost inherent to eDrive vehicles.
FOÚR DRIVING MODES.
The Driving Experience Control switch on the center console offers various driving modes.
The standard COMFORT mode offers a balance between sporty performance and fuel efficiency. SPORT mode features the ultra-intense boost function provided by the electric motor. ECO PRO mode supports a more efficient, optimized driving style which can be used in both all-electric mode and hybrid mode. Finally, eDRIVE mode is purely electric, offering a max range of up to 15 miles and a max speed of 75 mph for a totally tailpipe emission-free ride.
THE MOST PROGRESSIVE SPORTS CAR EVER.
Part of reinventing the sports car is rethinking its entire architecture. For BMW i, this led to the creation of the LifeDrive architecture, consisting of two separate, independent modules. This revolutionary construction was designed to deliver impeccable performance, superior dynamics, all the while offering near-perfect 50:50 weight distribution.