New spy photos and a video of the BMW i8 emerge from Sweden. The upcoming hybrid sportscar continues its cold weather testing trials and the spy photographers gives us a peak at the engine sound.
Compared to the spy photos seen a few days ago, this prototype seems to be the one closer to production. The gullwing doors are present on this test mule and according to BMW, the beautiful glass seen on the doors of the i8 Concept will be replaced by conventional materials.
When it was first unveiled to the world at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show, BMW introduced the Vision EfficientDynamics Concept with a 3-cylinder turbodiesel engine rear/mid-mounted. In a recent interview with BMWBLOG, Dr. Klaus Draeger, Head of R&D at BMW, said that original diesel engine will be replaced by a conventional gasoline unit.
“We will stick to the 3 cylinder engine, but we’ll change over from a diesel to a petrol. The reason for that is that we have quite some areas in the world where the diesel is not the preferred fuel. And in order not to develop both a diesel and a gasoline version, we decided to choose the gasoline version, because the fuel consumption is pretty low anyway, and on the other side we would also be able to increase the power. So currently we’re looking at 164 kW output out of this 1.5 liter 3-cylinder gasoline turbocharged engine, with all the high-tech features,”, said Dr. Draeger.
The engine is mounted at the rear and drives via a dual-clutch gearbox.
The rear-mounted electric motor is said to produce 33 horsepower continuously(51 hp peak) and maximum torque of 214 lb-ft. The synchronous electric motor placed at the front axle constantly outputs 80 horsepower. Extra power of 112 hp is available for 30 seconds and for 10 seconds, 139 horsepower. Total torque: 162 lb-ft.
The BMW i8 is expected to debut in early 2014 and the price speculations fall around the $160,000m mark.