While many motoring names have acted with caution while entering the metaphorical sea of electric vehicles, BMW has dived in head first with the new i8 – a luxury car that offers a window into the future of efficient motoring.
In what could be a revolution for the German marque, the i8 marries blistering performance with even more impressive levels of engine efficiency. While the 1.5L turbo-charged Mini Cooper engine feeds 228bhp to the rear wheels, between the front wheels there’s a 128bhp hybrid synchronous electric motor. The two sources are teamed with a two-speed gearbox to provide a seamless drive. The i8 also benefits from an intelligent energy management system, assessing and distributing the energy evenly to offer an all-electric range of 37km.
When slipping the car into Sport Mode, it handles like any mid-engined sportscar should – offering dependable balance and instant responses under the throttle.
This alteration of power source, combined with the carbon-fibre reinforced plastic monocoque, makes for a remarkable weight loss, with the overall weight with a full tank of petrol being just 1,540kg; that’s less than both the Porsche 918 and 911 Turbo.
Looks to kill
Sporting a low ride and fierce styling from head to toe, first impressions of the i8 would suggest that it’s a fully-graduated supercar that’s prepared to take on all other members in its field. After slumping into the deep-dished sports seats, drivers will have a host of colourful LCD displays to marvel at; it’s an experience that’s a world away from that of a conventional BMW, but then again, this isn’t a normal BMW!
Prospective owners of the i8 will have to part with the best part of £100,000 for the keys and while it won’t rank in the same league as the McLaren P1 or LaFerrari, it instead serves as an alternative to the likes of the mighty Porsche 911 or the sleek Audi R8.
With long waiting lists for the i8, Romans International have access to some of the first cars on the market so please contact us if your looking to purchase one.