BMW Group is now conducting final preparations for the production of its BMW i8 at its Leipzig site in Germany. The carmaker will commence delivery of the first customer cars in June 2014, starting with the main European markets. Before that, BMW will hold special public events in across the world to meet the huge interest in the BMW i8.
To accomplish this, BMW i agents will be provided with separate demonstration vehicles. The carmaker will commence series production of customer vehicles in April with customers placing pre-orders for the BMW i8 in all major markets since autumn 2013. The demand for the vehicle, however, is already surpassing the planned production volume during ramp-up.
While completing the statutory type approval, BMW engineers were able to further improve key driving performance and fuel consumption data.
The BMW eDrive in plug-in hybrid configuration allows the i8 to accelerate from zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 4.4 seconds while achieving an EU test cycle average fuel consumption of 2.1 liters/100 km (134.5 mpg imp) and carbon dioxide emissions of 49 g/km.
Its related electricity consumption was 11.9 kWh per 100 km. BMW is bound to offer optional BMW laser headlights for autumn 2014, when the BMW i8 would become the first production car to offer such lighting technology. BMW laser headlights are considered 30 percent more energy-efficient than the BMW i8’s standard LED headlights and could illuminate the road up to 600 meters.
The body of the new BMW i8 has a design that is groundbreaking as concept itself. Its proportions, lines and surfaces all convey the signature BMW dynamics, lightweight design and efficiency. Furthermore, the new i8 comes with a design that makes its easily recognizable both as a next-generation sports car and member of the BMW i model family.
As designed, the new BMW i8 is marked by overlapping and interlocking surfaces (layered structure) as further highlighted by its color scheme. Through this layering principle, BMW was able to contain aerodynamic forms in a progressively styled package, with its dynamic wheel arches helping draw focus to the sports car’s wide track.
In addition, the compact construction that differentiates the electric motor and combustion engine has allowed the i8’s front and rear end to feature a low-slung design and dynamically stretched flanks. Its unique design is further accentuated by the fact that its doors open forwards and upwards like wings.
Just like any BMW i vehicle, the new i8 comes with the signature black belt. This black belt on the BMW i8 is born in a "V" shape from the bonnet and extends over the roof, flowing to the rear end. Here the black belt frames the center section of the rear apron. At the rear end, the black belt is overlapped by the "floating" roof pillars extending over the rear lights, while at the front end, this signature cue is framed by the body-colored apron and side panels.
In addition, the new BMW i8 also features the so-called "stream flow" contour of the side window styling. The stream flow on the i8 helps establish the route of air travelling between the falling roofline and the character line rising through the rear of the flanks.