With both outstanding sports car performance and groundbreaking efficiency, the BMW i8 Concept is an inspiring masterpiece. Inspired by the BMW Vision EfficientDynamics vehicle featured in the Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol movie, the plug-in hybrid can travel up to 20 miles on electric power alone and accelerates from zero to 60 mph in less than five seconds. There’s no denying that the BMW i8 Concept is the best of both worlds.
The BMW i8 concept features a lithium-ion battery that can be charged in 1.45 hours using an installed level 2 wallbox at 32 amps or 3.5 hours using a standard 120 volt socket at 12 amps. The plug-in hybrid concept is a combination of the modified electric drive system (eDrive) from the BMW i3 Concept (mounted over the i8 front axle) producing 170 hp and a high-performance 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder combustion engine that produces 220 hp and 221 lb/ft of torque. Working in tandem, they allow the two drive systems to display their respective talents, delivering drive performance of a true sports car, and a combined fuel consumption of 87mpg.
LifeDrive architecture helps make BMW i8 Concept truly unforgettable. The motor in the front axle module is linked to the combustion engine at the rear by an “energy tunnel” that houses the high-voltage battery. This structuring, along with other space-saving and well-balanced packaging, gives the car a low center of gravity and optimum 50/50 weight distribution.
The BMW i8 Concept Car integrates lightweight construction throughout the car and the use of CFRP (Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic) offering advantages over steel. CFRP is as strong as steel, it is around 50% lighter, and is used in vehicle body construction without sacrificing safety. The entire production of the CFRP is powered through sustainable hydroelectric power at SGL’s facility at Moses Lake, Washington.
The architecture of the BMW i8 Concept also contributes to its stunning appearance. BMW i “stream flow” makes the car look as if it’s surging forward, even at a standstill. The flat silhouette complements the large, transparent interior space, and the doors swing upward like wings. A black, semi-transparent “V” emerges from the hood behind the kidney grille, opening toward the windshield. Not only is the effect visually stunning, but the eye is drawn to the electric motor below – a nod to the car’s brains as well as its beauty.
Inside, the BMW i8 Concept caters to its driver with three-dimensional displays and a high-resolution format. Relevant information presents itself clearly, and perfectly situated instruments allow the driver to respond smoothly. A Porcelain White support structure is paired with Mocha Brown leather for a modern and premium look and feel.
More conventional features are built into the BMW i8 as well. The car’s two drive systems allow for all four wheels to be driven at the same time, similar to an all-wheel drive vehicle. Also, the 2+2-seat arrangement provides enough space for four people and adds everyday practicality.
Learn more about the BMW i8 Concept at http://www.bmwusa.com/standard/content/allbmws/conceptvehicles/default.aspx. As the car continues to turn heads around the world, its exquisite design and innovative technology is revolutionizing the future of the automotive world.