Car reviews - BMW - i8 - Coupe
BMW’s return to mid-engine sportscars proves how much hybrid technology can do
20 Mar 2015
EIGHT years after acquiring the Italian supercar brand Lamborghini, Volkswagen Group rolled out its own Gallardo-based high-performance model badged as an Audi – the R8.
Arch-rival BMW was watching from the wings and realised that to compete, it too would have to offer a showstopping mid-ship sports halo, but after another eight years the propeller badge finally has this – the i8.
With a cutting-edge petrol/electric plug-in hybrid powertrain, extensive carbon-fibre construction, four-wheel steering and drive, and that body – oh that body – BMW is back in the thoroughbred sports game for the first time since its late 1970s M1.
But where its rivals use thirsty multi-cylinder engines and economy-robbing transmissions, BMW has developed a revolutionary drivetrain that combines its most powerful engine per litre, an electric motor and the world’s first two-speed e-drive transmission.
With the i8, BMW is going after the discerning but environmentally conscious driving enthusiast with an awesome package.
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Model release date: 1 October 2014
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