Tuesday, August 12, 2014

BMW i8

We don’t normally have new cars on here, usually due to any car that now goes into production, particularly from a major manufacturer, are styled for mass appeal and mass production. But every now and again something comes along that breaks the mould. The BMW i8 is one such car.

Unlike every other car in the BMW stable this is not meant for mass production but as a showcase for future technologies wrapped up in a supercar body awesome enough to go on any school boys wall or desktop.

Now the technology, petrol/electric hybrid, designed to be the ultimate Grand Tourer, with a 228bhp 3 cylinder turbo petrol engine for long distance driving and the electric motor to add 130bhp to it when you want some fun, then around town full electric to get around congestion and environmental charges. That package gives you a limited top of speed of 155mph and with the added electric torque fast acceleration through the gears, all that and over 100mpg and an electric only range of up to 23 miles to boot.

It’s truly a car that has to be seen, it has flurries of style and shape that you wouldn’t expect from the usually “safe” BMW, the cut outs on the rear flanks, probably to reduce drag but they add so much character to it. The gull-wing doors that open up to reveal the fantastic interior but also show its carbon fibre construction, the weave can be seen all over the body with only the outer skin painted. One thing that did surprise me, I suppose I hadn’t even thought about it till I looked inside, was the two rear seats making this a true 2+2 GT car.

This may not be the fastest or the most expensive (it isn’t cheap mind at £100,000) but it is a car manufacturer trying out new technology that will end up in an everyday car, hell it’s started with the toned down i3, and wrapping it in a package that’s accessible. Not just some smoothed off jelly mould eurobox that doesn’t stir the driver in you, this should be seen as one hell of a marketing tool that makes hybrid technology not just about saving the world but creating something desirable at the same time.

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