BMW i8 A peek into the future of supercars EPA ECON CITY/HWY: 76 MPG-E 0-60 MPH: 3.8 SEC BASE PRICE $137,500* BODY ...
BMW i8 A peek into the future of supercars
0-60 MPH: 3.8 SEC

BASE PRICE $137,500* BODY TYPE Coupe
The BMW i8 is a window into the future of our craft, the next step along the road for people who love driving. One of our Automobile All-Stars for 2015, the BMW i8 is a sultry mid-engine hybrid with a supercar silhouette. It can drive along silently in full-electric mode or rip around a road course at full tilt with all the pieces of its hybrid powertrain working together. The i8 drives well, looks great, and delivers on its promises of sportiness and efficiency.

Base Engine
1.5L turbo I-3 + electric, 357 hp
Opt Engine None
Drivetrain Mid-engine, RWD
Transmission 6A
Basic Warranty 4 yrs/50,000 miles
IntelliChoice 5-Yr Retained Value 45%
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  •   Quentin Willson reacted to this post about 1 year ago
    Long-term test 2017-BMW-i8 The same but different

    CAR: #2017-BMW-i8 / #BMW-i8 / #2017 / #BMW / #BMW-i3


    Love or loathe’em, hybrids are here to stay – although it’s more than 20 years since the Toyota Prius was launched and you do have to wonder whether the public would have embraced hybrids sooner if they’d looked more like spaceships and less like painted vegetables.

    Fact is, as I was always banging on about when I ran my first-generation Honda Insight (now sold; see), hybrids can be a lot of fun to drive. We’ve been running an i3 on the mag for a few months now, and all of us have relished the intellectual challenge of using its regenerative charging system to the max – and, less intellectually, the childish thrill of swooshing past other drivers by surfing the i3’s remarkable wave of torque.

    Interesting car though it is, the i3 has its limitations. It’s intended to be a city car but several of us live a considerable distance from the office, which means that a one-way drive will exhaust a full electrical charge – and the tiny range-extending petrol engine only gives you another 70 miles. Charging the car at home from a domestic supply can take up to 15 hours, and if you live in a flat, like me, you’re stuffed.

    Which is why we were keen to try the i3’s bigger brother, the i8. It’s a completely different kind of car: a GT with supercar performance that promises supermini economy. Yes, it’s a petrol-electric hybrid, but you can choose to run the i8 on petrol all the time (unlike the i3), using its turbocharged three-cylinder 1.5-litre engine – nicked from the entry-level Mini, can you believe – with added oomph supplied by the electric motor. A 1.5-litre triple may not sound exciting, but 0-62mph in 4.4 seconds tells a different story.

    Talking of exciting sounds, the i8 is a bit of a fibber in that its sporty exhaust note (which sounded a bit racing #V8-like , to these ears) is artificial and piped into the cabin. Shame! But that doesn’t detract too much. The #BMW-i8 is not just blisteringly fast, it feels genuinely special, and at night its cabin is streaked with blue-LED curves in a very spaceship manner.

    The one feature about the i8 guaranteed to divide opinion is the gullwing doors. They look super-cool but, leave the car in a typical British car park, come back to find someone has parked either side of you, and you may not be able to open them wide enough to get in. You have to be pretty athletic to climb in and out of the lowslung seats with any decorum, too – which rules out much of the #Drive-My team.

    For that reason, my colleague Glen said that he’d rather spend his hypothetical 100 grand on a 911. I take his point but I’d still have an i8. After all, who doesn’t want to pilot a spaceship?
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  •   Stuart Gallagher reacted to this post about 2 years ago
    Car: #BMW-i8 / #BMW
    Date acquired November #2016
    Total mileage 12,526
    Mileage this month 1074
    Costs this month £0
    Mpg this month 37.2

    Three years after driving one for the first time, Richard Meaden revisits the i8. Have his feelings about it changed?


    The future is it quickly becomes the present and then, in equally short order, the recent past. The first time I drove an i8, during eCoty 2014 (the silver car pictured here), it very much felt like I was in some kind of time machine. The looks, the technology and, yes, the driving experience all felt like something very fresh.

    A few years later and that bold Bavarian vision of the future is parked outside my house, thanks to the benevolence of editor Gallagher, who wants to share the i8 love.

    Its presence has certainly taken the sting from losing my old Fast Fleeter, the stonking AMG C63 S (the final report for which you may have read on). I’m struggling to think of two more different takes on the quick, premium, German two-door, but the contrast is very good for revealing what I like and dislike about BMW’s statement of intent.

    Do I miss a big, ballsy combustion engine? When I press the i8’s starter button, yes, of course I do. The AMG was like a shot of adrenalin, whereas the i8 starts with an aural cue much like turning on a laptop. The funny thing is, so long as it has some juice in the batteries, that disappointment lasts just as long as it takes to pull the gear-selector into D and whirr off down my drive on near-silent electric propulsion. No, that novelty never wears off.

    Sadly, the thrum of the i8’s triple-cylinder petrol engine is less endearing – unless you really clog it, at which point it starts to become interesting. I didn’t mind it so much back in 2014, but expectations have grown in 2017. In fact, I’m the first to admit the most satisfying solution could easily be more/all electricity and less/no internal combustion. As it stands, the i8 feels like it’s caught between two worlds – those of an all-electric future and a past rooted in performance cars requiring petrol engines to feel authentic.

    Does it feel quick? When you floor it with all 357bhp, absolutely. The torque-fill from the electric motor really does deliver a decent shove, and the tall gearing adds to the sense of reach and elastic, accessible performance.

    Chassis-wise, it’s competent but a bit of a cold fish. The numb steering is the weakest element, which is a shame as you do feel inclined to drive the i8 at a decent pace on fun roads. The damping is firm but the body is nicely controlled, so it’ll find a flow on a good A-road. Some of the lack of feel can be blamed on the tyres, which generate decent grip in the dry but lack progression when you exceed their limits. And it all gets a bit spooky in the wet, with a glassy feel that offers little clue as to how much grip there is to play with.

    What the i8 does brilliantly is provoke thought and reaction. Kids love it – surely a good thing to enthuse new generations of car nuts – and even those adults I’d have down as diehard petrolheads are intrigued by the looks, technology and driving experience.

    You can’t directly compare the i8 in value-for-money or bang-per-buck terms with conventional rivals. But as a bold attempt at reconciling a love of cars and driving with an environmental conscience, this BMW has plenty going for it.

    Richard Meaden (@DickieMeaden)

    ‘Chassis-wise, it’s competent but a bit of a cold fish. The numb steering is the weakest element’
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  •   Stuart Gallagher reacted to this post about 2 years ago
    Vorsteiner bodykits for #BMW-i8 / #BMW / #BMW-i8-Vorsteiner / #Vorsteiner / #Vorsteiner-bodykit

    It takes quite something for a modern car to be truly groundbreaking, particularly now that we live in a world dominated by amazing hybrids and battery-powered wundercars, but the BMW i8 most definitely fits the bill. It’s a car which manages to marry technology so cutting edge that it should come with a health and safety warning; great looks and breathtaking performance – no mean feat! Better still it’s a car that has recently been added to the Vorsteiner range of Aero body components, meaning i8 owners now have the option of making their already eye-catching cars that bit more jaw-slackening.

    Probably best known for its aerodynamics, wind tunnel-honed bodywork additions, carbon fibre creations and hyper-aggressive alloy wheels, Vorsteiner’s portfolio is ideally suited for the UK market.

    Brought to the UK under the umbrella of The Performance Company (TPC), the Vorsteiner kit for the i8 is drawn from the much-lauded Aero range, and has the potential to utterly transform the look of this already striking-looking Munich machine.

    Vorsteiner’s offerings for the genre-defying i8 are particularly special, and the full range of components includes a VR-E Aero front spoiler, #VR-E-Aero rear diffuser and VR-E Aero ‘ducktail’ rear spoiler. Striking enough in their own right, these components have been further elevated by being rendered in glossy carbon fibre. The Aero parts can be ordered separately or, for the full effect, as a complete, show-stopping package.

    Those opting for the latter will create an i8 that’s quite unlike anything else on the road today, the Aero add-ons serving to enhance the already aggressive styling of this spectacular-looking car.

    Pushing the boundaries of art and technology, Vorsteiner is able to supply premium composite components made to exacting standards, all realised in the finest autoclaved pre-impregnated carbon fibre.

    Vorsteiner carbon fibre provides superior stiffness, aerospace strength and durability, compared to traditional hand-laid carbon fibre composites, meaning it can be counted on both to perform and look jaw-dropping.

    Prices for the components are as follows:

    • VR-E Aero front spoiler carbon fibre PP 1x1 glossy - £1,974
    • VR-E Aero rear diffuser carbon fibre PP 1x1 glossy - £1,974
    • VR-E Aero ducktail spoiler carbon fibre PP 1x1 glossy - £1,036
    (all prices excl. VAT).
    Call 01933 685840 or visit for more information.

    Enhance the look of your i8 with the impressive new aero kit from Vorsteiner.
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  •   Richard Meaden reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    / #ACS8 / #AC-Schnitzer-i8 / #BMW-i8 / #BMW-i8-AC-Schnitzer / #AC-Schnitzer / #AC-Schnitzer-ACS8 / #BMW-i8-Schnitzer / #BMW / #2017 / #BMW-i8 / BMW / #BMW-i-Series / #2017

    There’s no doubting that the star of the show as far as the #BMW-tuning companies were concerned was AC Schnitzer’s take on BMW’s i8. This example looked absolutely stunning in its metallic red wrap along with a selection of Schnitzer carbon fibre embellishments. We’ve seen a #Schnitzer-i8 previously but the company now offers more carbon parts for the car with a new front splitter assembly and some additional cooling ducts behind the front wheels and to the rear of the rear wheel arches.

    Sitting on lowered suspension and a set of trademark Schnitzer alloys it really did look absolutely eye-popping and it’s not hard to understand why the company’s programme for the i8 has been so successful – not only is it one of the few options on the market for those wishing to personalise their cars, but the fit and finish is second to none.
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  •   Richard Meaden reacted to this post about 3 years ago

    Car #BMW-i8 / #BMW / #BMW-i-Series /
    Date acquired November #2016
    Total mileage 5550
    Mileage this month 3947
    Costs this month £0
    Mpg this month 38.1

    Always intriguing, but never a group-test winner, will a longterm test show BMW’s £104,000 hybrid coupe at its best?

    Life is full of contrasts, and contrasts don’t get much bigger than walking away from six months of RS6 Performance custodianship and into a BMW i8. From 597bhp, 4 litres, eight cylinders and two turbos to 1.5 litres, three cylinders, 262bhp and one 95bhp electric motor. Drive still goes to all four wheels, but with the BMW having two fewer gears to shuffle, that is where the similarities begin and end.

    For the next six months the ferocious acceleration of the Audi will be replaced by the serene and all-but-silent thrust of BMW’s carbon-core hybrid coupe. Beyond that, I’m not sure exactly what to expect at this moment, but I’d like to see some semblance of the i8 being a proper sports coupe and a benefit of ditching some cylinders and lugging some super-sized AA batteries around.

    Evo’s i8 has a number of questions to answer between now and the summer. Is it a sports car?

    Is it a revolution of the breed and the first taste of what we can expect in the future? Can it entertain and delight? Will it fire our imaginations and play a part in great drives? Can it deliver on the thrill of driving? Previous drives of i8s have come close to delivering an answer to some of those questions. But only close. Few of us at evo have walked away from an i8 regaling others with tales of epic journeys and drives never to be erased from the memory. None of us has felt it has ever got under our skin nor become the default answer to the question: ‘Which sports coupe should I buy?’ Over the coming months and many miles we will have the opportunity to discover if BMW’s hybrid coupe is the real deal or a style (and technology) over substance machine.

    What exactly are we running, then? There’s only one i8 trim level and it costs £104,540 basic. BMW’s generous press office, however, has added £12,065 of toys to our car. There’s £1700 for carbonfibre interior trim, £1150 for W-spoke alloy wheels (still 20 inches in diameter), ‘Comfort Access’ at £795, £85 for eDrive exterior sound (need to work that one out), £95 for an internet connection, £895 for a Harman/ Kardon stereo upgrade and £1850 for a Carpo Carum Grey interior.

    And then there is the £5495 of Post Production Applied Special Paint, which required the removal of all the body panels to have them repainted in Twilight Purple Pearl before being refitted. It’s a process currently available only in the UK.

    First impressions are light, as I took custody of the i8 just seven days before typing this, so it’s still all a bit new. The wife is going to complain about the lack of luggage/ shopping space and I’m going to need to remember to charge the batteries to make the most of the i8’s abilities. But it’s going to be an intriguing journey, nonetheless.
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  •   Chris Nicholls reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    Engine of the year award for #BMW-i8 / #BMW / #2016 /

    Following its overall victory and two class wins in last year’s International Engine of the Year Awards, the drive system powering the i8 has again triumphed in its class – the 1.4-litre to 1.8-litre displacement category – in this year’s competition.

    The awards were launched in 1999. Since then a total of 67 class and overall wins have gone to power units developed for BMW models. Each year an expert panel of judges, this time comprising 63 motoring journalists from 31 countries, selects the best examples in numerous categories.
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  •   Stuart Gallagher reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    Individual colours for UK #BMW-i8 / #BMW / #2016 / #BMW-i8-Individual / #BMW-i8-I12

    BMW UK has extended its colour palette i8 with an array of striking new hues. As part of the BMW Individual collection, customers will be able to choose from a multitude of paint finishes including Java green, Speed yellow, Solar orange, Twilight purple pearl, Frozen grey, Frozen black, San Marino blue and Grigio Telesto pearl, to name just a few.

    A variety of finishes are also available, including nonmetallic, metallic or Xirallic, which uses a mixture of synthetic mica or aluminium flakes in the paint. The addition of the new BMW Individual paint programme for the i8 follows the success of the early orders for the Protonic red limited edition and is bespoke to the UK. Commenting on the i8 Individual Exterior Paint Programme, Richard Hudson, Sales Director for #BMW-UK , said: “The i8 embodies the accomplished vision of a modern and sustainable sports car. The new paintwork colours not only complement the BMW i8’s emotive styling and design, they also work harmoniously with the BMW i brand and provide customers with exclusive personalised options.”

    As well as the special paint finishes the i8 can also now be spec’d with black W-spoke wheels, too. The Individual paint finishes start at £5495 on top of the i8’s £105,540 on-the-road price tag.
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  •   Stuart Gallagher reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    Words Kristie Bertucci / Photos Takanori Arima / #Energy-Motor-Sport / #EVO-i8 / #BMW-i8-EVO / #BMW-i8 / #BMW-i8-Energy-Motor-Sport / #BMW / #eDrive / #2016 / #TwinPower

    Stunning is the first word one might think of when seeing BMW's i8 in person. The plugin hybrid from BMW is no ordinary sports car, using eDrive technology that combines the efficiency of an all-electric motor with the power of a TwinPower Turbo engine. While it provides an exhilarating driving experience, its bold looks highlight the vehicle's aerodynamics, with every detail created toward channeling airflow for even more efficiency. It's a thing of perfection in many eyes as is.

    But like other sports cars that have come before it, tuners don't see a thing of perfection, but a blank canvas to build their masterpiece.

    One such company that creates aftermarket parts for the i8 is Japanese tuner Energy Motor Sport, which has been specializing in making Bavarian beauties more unique and personalized since 199S. While some might consider the design of the i8 a perfect balance of sport and luxury, Energy Motor Sport took it upon themselves to enhance the styling by adding lines and a muscular feel. “We wanted to produce a grandiose piece of ‘work’ and felt the i8 was the best car for us to do that with," mentions Energy Motor Sport's store manager Yu Aoki. "We felt that we could complement the beautiful design by refining the front end to be more aggressive and came up with a kit that made it still look like a supercar, but with a futuristic design."

    The result is what they call the "EVO i8" which consists of a front fascia that incorporates sharp, downward fins, a custom hood and flared wheel arches in addition to the two half wings are reminiscent of Ferrari's FXX K track-only hypercar. To visually highlight the modifications, a matte silver wrap that features polished chrome and gloss black accents was chosen and installed by P.G.D. Wraps. “P.G.D is a famous professional wrapping team here in Japan," Aoki says. “They also wrap SEMA builds every year for the ARLON Film booth and had their work showcased on the cover of Arlon’s Automotive Restyling Brochure since they won their social media competition, WrapWars.

    To complete the enhancements, a custom designed set of 21" #BBS x Energy Motor Sport forged concave wheels were matched with Pirelli P Zero tires. The interior was modestly dressed in key carbon fiber accents that coordinated with the exterior styling cues.

    No performance modifications were given to the i8 for its debut at the #2016-Tokyo-Auto-Salon but they do plan on producing a custom exhaust system for the i8, with the possibility of producing it for sale. Because of this eye-catching build, Energy Motor Sport has already received a few orders for their Evo i8 kits from Japan. China, Vietnam and a few BMW dealerships here in the U.S. With the positive international response to the silver i8, Energy Motor Sport is currently creating other color editions of their EVO i8, including one dressed in a matte black color that they’ll call the “Darknight Edition." “We’re also waiting for the release of the i8 Spyder, so when that's delivered, we'll definitely produce a new design for it!" Energy Motor Sports is looking forward to the possibility of bringing the EVO i8 to the upcoming SEMA Show where it can stun onlookers stateside.
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