The BMW I8 is no more people, BMW has recently announced that the brand’s initial foray into the hybrid sports car space that spanned over 6 years, is finally going to relinquish itself to the hall of fame and both the coupe and the roadster are going to bid adieu to the showroom floors, come April 2020.
’Twas 2011, Mission Impossible-Ghost Protocol, Tom Cruise arrived in an extremely futuristic looking piece of machinery, the lines and character just oozed exuberance, What exactly was that thing I ask myself? A Bimmer? Is this is production? What has Bavaria created? To be real, quite a few thoughts ran through my brain and it wasn’t really easy to decode what emotions the vehicle evoked. The vehicle in the discussion was the BMW I8 concept that was able to steal all the limelight from Tom Cruise himself because it looked that freaking phenomenal. The futuristic-looking concept looked meaner than any concept that had ever featured in a movie and BMW had performed an impressive job. I secretly drooled over the thought of seeing something like the I8 concept on the road, but deep inside I knew that concepts that are this farfetched in their design language either never make it to the asphalt, or get changed so dramatically that the resemblance to the concept is lost somewhere through production- Oh how much I underestimated BMW!
In 2014, BMW, in response to every person who ever doubted BMW’s capability was served with some Humble Pie, and that too ice cold. BMW unveiled the production-ready I8 and it had never been harder for me to pick up my jaw while simultaneously trying to take out the countless feet I had in my mouth. BMW had gone past all of my, and I presume, everybody else’s expectations and put forth a vehicle that was almost indistinguishable from their I8 concept that had debuted in 2011. Yes, the production vehicle had gained a set of doors rather unsurprisingly but nothing relevant had changed at all, The mean front end was the same, the rear looks as futuristic as ever, the interior had the same Sci-Fi vibe and even the doors that we now a part of the car were the showy kind- You know the ones that open towards the sky and not towards the plebian cars that are parked next to you at Costco? Yep, those ones. The automotive community couldn’t stop going crazy over the design of the I8, BMW had created a vehicle that created such a buzz that it is even more commendable to look back and ponder as to how BMW managed to put forth such a product in 2014. Sadly, it wasn’t all just great news because as soon as the powertrain on the I8 was announced, an air of disappointment engulfed my mind. The I8 was slated to be launched with a three-cylinder 1.5-liter petrol engine that was coupled with a 131 hp electric motor that in conjunction produced 357 hp which wasn’t a terribly large amount of ponies and did water down the overall impact of the vehicle as a supercar. At the time, the I8 was technically BMW’s flagship vehicle as even though it wasn’t the most expensive BMW on sale, it still was the most ambitious in terms of brand image and technology showcase.
The vehicle which started it’s life as an exercise by BMW to strengthen their brand image and showcase to the world their plans of moving towards the future with all approaches open finally became a great seller for the brand as a whole. The I8 was never intended to be a high volume vehicle, but even then BMW was very surprised at the number of sales that the I8 brought in. The I8, even with it’s, honestly, underwhelming performance is still one of BMW’s best standalone sports cars and raked in quite the numbers as the 20,000th variant of the same was driven off the lot in December of 2019. If we were to put this into perspective, BMW sold 5,700 Z8’s from 2000 to 2003 and just a mere 399 street-legal M1’s from 1978 to 1981. The current iteration of the BMW I8 dubbed the Ultimate Sophisto, features an upgraded power output and little bits and bobs to make it still kind of relevant by today’s standards as even after more than 6 years in production and 9 years in front of consumers eyes, the I8 has remained largely unchanged and still doesn’t look out of place, at least on the outside. Visit – Best information Today
With BMW moving to an even more sustainable future where future models that could follow the I8 would feature a redesigned logo that BMW recently unveiled, it would be tough to say if anything as remarkably distinct as the I8 could ever show face to the general public. The company’s management has hinted at a 600 horsepower monster of a vehicle in the form of the Vision M Next that was introduced in 2019 and could see itself going into production anytime soon. BMW also plans on unveiling an electric sedan that would possess the dimensions of a current-gen 3-Series as one of their next “I” models, but there is no indication whether this vision that was showcased with the 2020 i4 concept would be a direct successor to the I8.
The BMW I8 might not have been the most brutal in terms of its power delivery but it was the most cutting edge piece of machinery to come out of Bavaria in 2014. BMW managed to achieve what it set out to do in 2014, and that was to make a completely different segment altogether for vehicles that they deemed might be ahead of their time but would help guide the company’s focus to a better future. The I8 might be leaving us all really soon, but the impact that this time capsule of a vehicle has left not only on BMW but on the consumers and other manufacturers in the community will continue to live on.