To celebrate their market debut in Romania, the new i3 and i8 joined forces for an exclusive phootshoot. The first two graduates of the BMW i division are ready to take on new markets which present new challenges as well. While some countries still lack the proper electric charging infrastructure, the need to own some of the most advanced BMWs ever built overcomes the barriers of electric cars adoption. Some customers are willing to look past the inconvenience of limited public charging stations and rather focus on the excitement brought by this electric and plug-in hybrid.
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The imagery showcased here places the i3 and i8 near one of the most iconic buildings in Bucharest and – likely – in the world: People’s Palace.
It measures 270m by 240m, 86m high, and 92m under ground. It has 1,100 rooms and is 12 stories tall, with additional 8 underground levels. The Palace was designed by a team of 700 architects and was completed in 1994. Since 1996, it has housed the Romanian Senate and Chamber of Deputies.
Tour guides say the building is the world’s third largest by volume after the Aztec pyramid of Teotihuacan and the Cape Canaveral rocket assembly hangar. It uses 220,000 square meters of carpet, 3,500 tons of crystal and one million cubic meters of marble – a reminder of the communist leader’s megalomania. The price to pay for running a building like this year-long? $6 million.
At night, thousands of lights surrounding the building create an exceptional image which makes the two BMWs stand out even more.
BMW makes two variants of the i3 and the two cars look nearly identical from the outside and takes a trained eye to spot the differences. Just as the total ranges of the two models vary, the technical differences of the REx and the i3 BEV are rather dramatic. The BMW i3 BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle) uses a rear-mounted electric motor powering the rear wheels and has a range of 81 miles. The BMW i3 REx mounts a small 2-cylinder gasoline engine under the trunk floor to give it a total range of 150 miles. Though, the added weight of the 2-pot gives the REx a lower pure EV range of only 72 miles.
The i8 has technology no other car under a million dollars has, it’s made mostly from carbon-fiber, it’s all-wheel drive and it’s mid-engined. Many also believe the i8 has exotic looks just like the Audi R8. BMW i8 uses a plug-in hybrid system consisting of a turbocharged three-cylinder BMW TwinPower Turbo petrol engine and BMW eDrive technology in the form of an electric drive system. The 1.5-liter combustion engine develops 170 kW/231 hp and drives the rear wheels of the BMW i8, while the 96 kW/131 hp electric drive sends its power to the front wheels and allows an all-electric range of up to 35 kilometers (22 miles) and a top speed of 120 km/h (75 mph).
It runs from 0 to 62 mph in just 4.4 seconds.
Take a look at the gallery below and feel free to download some high-res images: