BMW i8, “the most progressive sportscar” as the Munich-based automaker labeled it, made its public debut today at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show.
According to BMW, the i8 will set a benchmark in the performance segment. The 349 horsepower hybrid has nearly 80 mpg fuel consumption. BMW says the i8 runs a 0-62mph in just 4.6 sec – 0.3 sec faster than the M3 Coupe. I
Initially previewed by the Vision EfficientDynamics (Vision ED) concept back in 2009, the super-sporty two-door i8 has already undergone two years of intensive development. The major change is a new 1.5 liter petrol engine replacing the initial diesel unit of same capacity. The engine is mounted at the rear and drives via a dual-clutch gearbox.
BMW i8 measures 4632mm in length, 1955mm in width and 1280mm in height, comparable to the 3 Series coupe in dimensions.
Both the BMW i3 and the BMW i8 will be built at BMW’s Leipzig plant in Germany. Some 400 million euros are earmarked for investment in new buildings and facilities by 2013, while 800 new jobs are to be created.