Automotive

BMW's production i8 hybrid makes world premiere

BMW's production i8 hybrid mak...
i8 will be available in four exterior colours and have four interior configuration options (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8 will be available in four exterior colours and have four interior configuration options (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW's much anticipated i8 made its world premiere in Frankfurt today (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW's much anticipated i8 made its world premiere in Frankfurt today (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The finished i8 is less futuristic fashion than the first iteration, with the glass doors unfortunately removed for the production model (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The finished i8 is less futuristic fashion than the first iteration, with the glass doors unfortunately removed for the production model (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8's passenger cabin is composed of carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic as part of BMW's LifeDrive architecture program (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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i8's passenger cabin is composed of carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic as part of BMW's LifeDrive architecture program (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8 uses TwinPower Turbo and BMW eDrive hybrid technology to deliver output of 362 hp (266 kW) and torque figures of 420 lb-ft (570 Nm) (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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i8 uses TwinPower Turbo and BMW eDrive hybrid technology to deliver output of 362 hp (266 kW) and torque figures of 420 lb-ft (570 Nm) (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The i8 first made its concept debut in Frankfurt back in 2009 in diesel format (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The i8 first made its concept debut in Frankfurt back in 2009 in diesel format (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8 hybrid performance figures are impressive, delivering 0 – 100 km/h (62 mph) times of only 4.4 seconds (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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i8 hybrid performance figures are impressive, delivering 0 – 100 km/h (62 mph) times of only 4.4 seconds (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8 uses AWD technology delivering power to all wheels via gas and electric power(Photo: Gizmag.com)
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i8 uses AWD technology delivering power to all wheels via gas and electric power(Photo: Gizmag.com)
The i8 will sell for a hefty US$135,700 when it hits US shores in the spring of 2014 (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The i8 will sell for a hefty US$135,700 when it hits US shores in the spring of 2014 (Photo: Gizmag.com)
BMW is offering i8 customers a wide variety charging services as part of their 360° ELECTRIC programme: including a Wallbox for home, charge cards and services like MyCityWay and ParkatmyHouse (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW is offering i8 customers a wide variety charging services as part of their 360° ELECTRIC programme: including a Wallbox for home, charge cards and services like MyCityWay and ParkatmyHouse (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8 features a layering design language accompanied by CFRP aluminum butterfly doors (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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i8 features a layering design language accompanied by CFRP aluminum butterfly doors (Photo: Gizmag.com)
i8 will be available in four exterior colours and have four interior configuration options (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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i8 will be available in four exterior colours and have four interior configuration options (Photo: Gizmag.com)
BMW i8 rear angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW i8 rear angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The BMW i8 goes from 0 to 62 mph in 4.4 seconds (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The BMW i8 goes from 0 to 62 mph in 4.4 seconds (Photo: Gizmag.com)
BMW i8 side view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW i8 side view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
BMW i8 interior (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW i8 interior (Photo: Gizmag.com)
BMW i8 was originally introduced as the Vision EfficientDynamics (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW i8 was originally introduced as the Vision EfficientDynamics (Photo: Gizmag.com)
BMW i8 low front angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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BMW i8 low front angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The i8's CFRP life module front angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The i8's CFRP life module front angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The i8's CFRP life module rear angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The i8's CFRP life module rear angle view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The i8's CFRP life module rear view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The i8's CFRP life module rear view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
The i8's CFRP life module side view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
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The i8's CFRP life module side view (Photo: Gizmag.com)
View gallery - 21 images

Gizmag has been following the development of BMW’s forward looking i8 for years. Now the fruits of that development labor have been revealed at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show with BMW finally de-cloaking the production version of the sporty plug-in hybrid.

The i8 is the second car launched under the company's "i" sub-brand, which grew from the Vision Efficient Dynamics concept exercise.

After several revisions and updates, the i8’s still makes an impressive visual statement, especially for a hybrid. The body is less futuristic than the glassy concept versions, but has retained key BMW genetics. On profile the car very much sports 6-series influences, with the exception of longer overhangs front and rear, and those floating roof wings.

Design aspects aside, the i8’s mandate is that of a performance hybrid, much in the same vein as Porsche’s 918 but at far lower price point.

Sporting a 1.5 liter turbocharged engine of only three cylinders, the i8 is capable of taking down serious performance machines thanks to the addition of an electric motor delivering 131 hp and 184 lb.ft of torque to the front wheels. All in all the i8 develops 362 hp and 420 lb.ft of torque, which translates into the best of both worlds – 113 mpg (2.5 liter/100 km) mileage figures coupled with a 0-62 mph (100 km/h) time of 4.4 seconds.

The i8 retains its original five drive modes and BMW still reports a range of 310 miles (500 km) in Comfort Mode. The i8 will be available in four exterior paint finishes and four interior options.

The price for the i8 is will reportedly be US$135,700 when it hits US shores in the spring of 2014.

Check Gizmag’s gallery for our first up close look at the production i8.

View gallery - 21 images
3 comments
RJB
Just when I could afford one I find that I would have difficulty getting in to it - and impossible to get out.
tyme2par4
For that price tag you could buy a Tesla S and a Volt for longer trips! Tell me when BMW makes something good...
Samer Helmy
Just when I was about to say BMW finally produced something that looks awesome, drives smart, and economical, they screw it up with a stupid price tag.