Even though the BMW i8 isn’t exactly meant for drag racing, that doesn’t mean people won’t use for such purposes. What makes this particular car more interesting is the fact that the guys racing it claim it has been tuned to 390 HP. The people over at PP-Performance would be the ones responsible for the power upgrade but we’re not certain of the numbers as there’s no power kit available on their website and, as far as we know, there’s only one tuner in the world offering a power upgrade for the i8 right now.
Those would be the guys from BR-Performance in Belgium. They announced a kit for the i8 a while back, offering 400 HP and 650 Nm of torque to interested buyers. The car we’re looking at here claims to have 390 HP which is close to what the Belgians are offering. Due to the complicated layout of the i8, the car’s power upgrade can come only by raising the performance delivered by the 1.5-liter, 3-cylinder turbocharged engine powering the rear axle.
Upgrading the electric motor would literally necessitate a new motor altogether, which is something few people would dare do. Nevertheless, the i8 in the footage below hangs with some rather serious competition. Unfortunately, this is a trap speed event, not a drag race one, where the all-wheel drive of the i8 and its instant torque would come in handy. Even so, the i8 posts great numbers by comparison.
It’s about 5 km/h faster than the E92 M3 it goes up against and understandably slower than the 500 HP 1M coupe, 436 HP Corvette and 570 HP Porsche 911 Turbo. Considering all the facts, the BMW i car did rather well, especially since it wasn’t developed for such purposes from the get go. That small 1.5-liter 3-cylinder engine performed admirably!