In 2014 BMW will introduce the highly-expected and sophisticated BMW i8 hybrid sportscar. The two-door, sporty hybrid features gullwing doors, wing-like rear-spoilers and a design that places the i8 in the same category as many luxury sports cars.
The lightweight i8 scales at 1450 kilograms, thanks to extensive use of carbon fiber design elements and cockpit, and it is powered by a 170 horsepower electric motor that drives the front-wheels, coupled with a 1.5 liter 3-cylidner turbocharged petrol engine producing another 223 horsepower.
Thanks to an intelligent transmission, the i8 can go from a front-wheel drive vehicle to a rear-wheel drive one, and even an all-wheel drive setup.
In full electric mode, the BMW i8 can travel up to 20 miles. Engaging the 393 ponies will catapult the i8 from 0 to 62 mph in just 4.9 seconds, a figure comparable to the naturally-aspirated-powered M3.
In the European driving cycle, the BMW i8 is expected to average nearly 80 mpg.
The i8 comes with such innovative driver assistance systems as One Pedal Control (accelerate, decelerate and coast by throttle order), Active Brake Control (works up to 40mph and includes pedestrian recognition), Park Assist (including automatic navigation), Congestion Assist (works up to 25mph and includes active steering), Range Assist (shows all available charge points and takes you there on demand), Precondition Assist (cooling down, heating, charging – all by smartphone) and Navigation Assist
According to Car Magazine UK, BMW considered an M version of the i8 with a V8 or even V10 engine, but the plans have been scraped all-together.
When it goes on sale, the BMW i8 will have a base price above 100,000 euros and it’s expected to sell to 10,000 customers every year. Some of our sources say that many dealerships in the U.S. and Europe have already compiled a waiting list for the i8.