BMW today released technical details on the much-anticipated i8. The production-ready sports car is scheduled to debut at the Frankfurt Auto Show next month.
The i8’s standout features include a 1.5-liter BMW TwinPower Turbo gasoline engine that allows the car to sprint 0 – 60 in under 4.5 seconds. The i8 is lightweight, with an aluminum Drive module that includes the internal combustion engine and electric motor, the battery and the power electronics.
The resulting low center of gravity and a near-perfect 50:50 axle load ratio means the i8 can live up to the sports performance BMW is known for.
BMW touts the i8 as the world’s first volume-produced vehicle to have chemically hardened glass, commonly used in smartphones for its durability. The partition between the passenger compartment and boot of the i8 has two layers of this glass. It’s nearly half the weight of conventional laminated glass.
The gas engine produces 231 hp sent to the rear wheels, while the 131 hp electric motor powers the front wheels. The all-electric driving range is around 22 miles at up to 75 mph, while an all-wheel-drive performance is also an option. Fuel economy is estimated at 95 miles per gallon.
The BMW i8 will arrive at dealerships in 2014. Pricing has not been announced.
Photo Credit: BMW