Is a new BMW supercar on the horizon? Some have eyed the BMW i8 as a super star in the making. The technology behind the i8 may do a great deal to change our interpretation of what a supercar can be. The BMW i8 specs show a powerful vehicle with a more modern version of the supercar: a mean-looking, plug-in hybrid with fearsome performance.
The BMW Supercar Has Changed
The i8 fits some definitions of a BMW supercar, and bucks other traditions. Some critics have found the interpretation appealing, while others say they love the BMW i8 but it does too many new things to fit the supercar mold precisely.
Whether the BMW i8 is a supercar or something altogether different, will BMW make one that fits more traditional definitions of “supercar”? BMW’s research & development chief Klaus Frohlich told Drive that he’s pushing hard to make it happen during the life cycle of the i8.
A Cinematic Aesthetic
The BMW i8 itself boasts aesthetic design that’s remarkable. It features butterfly doors that lift upward and out of the way when getting in and out. The low-slung design features an aggressively swept greenhouse that gives the car its mean, assertive look. The car always looks like it’s angry with someone and out for vengeance, which lends it a cinematic flair. It looks like it should be in constant chase scenes.
BMW i8 Specs
The i8 features a 369 horsepower combined powertrain that delivers 420 lb-ft of torque. It can achieve 0 to 60 mph in just 3.8 seconds.
It holds the road well and offers remarkable braking power and precise handling. This makes it a great car to, as Car and Driver puts it, “fling around corners”. The roadster version offers a convertible variation with a very cleanly operating top.
Charging is a breeze, using a plug that can take advantage of BMW’s network of charging stations or any other public option.
BMW will come along with a new supercar at some point, but don’t take your eyes off the i8 as the BMW supercar that exemplifies a different take on what this category can be. The BMW i8 is a powerful and stylized plug-in hybrid interpretation of the supercar.
BMW hybrids have seen massive success. There’s an appetite for hybrid and electric vehicles that can deliver on both the performance and environmental fronts. Other more recent successes have been BMW crossovers. The crossovers flawlessly blend the speed and handling of a car with the practicality of an SUV. Therefore, it was inevitable that we’d soon see BMW start making hybrid crossovers.
How Many Models?
What should we expect? Well, BMW has already reserved the rights on the following model names: i1, i9, iX1 and iX9. That may seem like Roman numerals gone mad, but it really does mean something. The “i” prefix designates BMW hybrids, while the “X” prefix is used for BMW crossovers. That means we’ll see at least two BMW crossovers that are hybrids – the iX1 and iX9.
BMW has declined to comment this early, but we can confirm one thing: the upcoming X3 has been described as “X” and “i” coming together. Whether that means we’ll get an X3 and/or an iX3 might just be a matter of semantics. This information together all but confirms at least three Bimmer hybrid crossover models.
Benefits of BMW Hybrids and BMW Crossovers
The advantages of BMW hybrids are clear. Electric motors can be used for local driving such as running errands, going to nearby jobs and shuttling children from activity to activity. The appeal of BMW crossovers is blending the room and usefulness of an SUV with the agility and handling of a performance car. This makes BMW crossovers fun to drive on camping trips, road trips and family vacations.
Having the advantages of BMW crossovers combined with the responsible features of BMW hybrids will be phenomenal. It will allow the best of multiple worlds: performance and SUV, gas and electric, etc. The technology inside only boosts the driving experience, with large, responsive touch-screens and head-up displays allowing you to check important driving information without taking your eyes off the road. This is the future of luxury crossovers, and we’re excited to step into it.
Maybe you’ve had a chance to look at the new BMW i8. Maybe you’ve held off because you need to know more about this iteration. Here’s your chance. The futuristic head turner is a hybrid with a design that stops people in their tracks.
What gives the new BMW i8 its “heart”? The battery. The old battery pack topped at 7.1 kWh. That’s not bad, but to stay ahead of the curve, it can be improved upon. That’s why the next i8 features a battery at 11.6 kWh. This doesn’t change the weight, but it does update the technology. This should improve upon the i8’s range from about 18 miles to over 30.
That’s the difference between making a daily commute a hybrid affair vs. making it fully electric. That’s a big deal, and it can do a lot to help environmentally minded BMW drivers feel better about their drives.
The electric motor’s also been improved. The 143 hp of the electric motor is up from 131 hp. Combine this with the combustion engine and you’re up to 369 hp. That’s a meaty amount for a speedy car that has the environmental footprint of a microcar.
The advantage of the updated BMW i8 is in its reduced environmental footprint. You can go 0 to 60 mph in under 4.2 seconds, but the footprint you leave behind is considerably less than a competitive car powered only by a combustion engine.
The Turned Heads
As long as the i8 keeps those astounding swing-up doors on its sleek frame, we’re glad to sit in the driver’s seat. You can take it for a spin to get a feel for it at your South Florida BMW dealership. Driving it is a unique experience that you deserve to feel for yourself.
As great as everything inside the car is, our favorite part is still what happens outside of it – the dropped jaws and amazed stares. For all the improvements on an already-capable battery and powertrain inside the car, it’s still the stunning exterior that gets the most notice.
LA’s boys (and girls) in blue are going green. Thanks to BMW of North America, the Los Angeles Police Department will add 100 BMW i3 electric cars to its stable. The electric/gas Bimmer hybrid will become a fuel-saving – and community-building – member of the force.
In field tests for the LAPD, BMW outmanned the competition by offering exceptional drivetrain efficiency, reliability, a tight turning radius, and connectability. This last feature will enable the police department to run a connected, integrated fleet – a must for their critical work. In addition, the short wheelbase will allow for maximum maneuverability – a must for narrow, congested LA streets.
The rookie on the force, the BMW i3 will not be out in hot pursuit or capturing the bad guys. Instead, it will be used to transport officers (for training, meeting, court appearances, etc.) and for community outreach. It’s distinct shape is sure to become a prominent fixture in the surrounding communities.
The city will see great cost savings: Greenlots, a company specializing in vehicle charging solutions, will supply 100 level 2 chargers and four DC fast chargers. Since the i3 can achieve a remarkable 137 highway miles per gallon, refueling costs will be quite low.
Mayor Eric Garcetti says, “We should be thinking green in everything we do – and these new EVs show how local government can lead. Our sustainability plan pushes LA to speed adoption of greener practices and technologies, which also save money and resources.”
Many police forces throughout the country are deploying electric vehicles to conserve resources and expand the functionality of their departments. LAPD chose the i3 over the Tesla (though they’re not ruling the latter out completely) for its remarkable efficiency and stellar performance in urban landscapes. Score one for the good guys!
You don’t have to have a badge to experience the efficiency of an i3. Head to your favorite dealer with BMW cars for sale and take a test drive.
BMW ConnectedDrive Services
Want to know what your BMW i Series vehicle is up to? BMW simply doesn’t stop with its innovation by creating a new car. They continue on in order to give you even more insight into your electric vehicle by providing you with the i Remote App, which tells you everything about your car no matter where you might be.
Detailed Information About Your Vehicle
For example, perhaps a family member is using your car for the day. With the i Remote App, you can discover its location, the range it has, what the battery level is, and even receive service messages that will inform you of lights left on or unlocked doors. It also includes a dynamic range map. This map not only shows you points of interest along your route, but also available charging stations and whether or not the station is occupied or vacant. Together with ChargeNow, you can see even more charging stations than before. The app will also provide additional tips on how to drive your electric vehicle more effectively in order to make the most out of its range. Your smart phone just got even smarter!
Intelligent Eco Technology
The other part of BMW’s i ConnectedDrive services include the in-car center for navigation and more. After all, you can’t be on your phone all the time, especially when you’re driving! Everything is utilized to its maximum potential in order to provide you with the best driving experience possible. Centered around the dynamic range map, the navigation process takes into account your battery’s current charge level, your driving style, the topography, and even current traffic conditions. Should some of these elements impede your ability to reach your destination, i ConnectedDrive will either use ECO ROUTE to suggest an alternative route for less power usage, or switch the iSeries vehicle over to the ECO PRO+ driving mode.
Everything about your next BMW iSeries is ready to provide you with whatever you need. Ask Braman BMW to learn more about BMW’s amazing electric cars and their i Connected Drive services.