2017 BMW I8 Plug-in Hybrid

#11
in Midsize coupes
2017 MODEL

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Detailed Review

Futuristic and appealing! BMW has been known for experimenting in the EV segment for a couple of years. The 2017 BMW i8 is one such example showcasing innovative approach of BMW engineers, making it world's first gas-electric hybrid supercar. This plug-in hybrid offers impressive design and performance. Talking about i8's flamboyant design, the sweeping line and scissor-lift doors are something to buzz about.


8.6/10
Features

 

8.4/10
Engine

 

8.6/10
Fuel Economy

 

8.9/10
Interior

 

9.1/10
Exterior

 
 
 
 

Powering the BMW i8 is a plug-in gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain that pulls the car up to 15 miles on sole battery power. The recharge time of the BMW i8 is just 1.5 hours. You’ll also see a 1.5-liter three-cylinder turbocharged gas engine, which transmits power to the rear wheels. With the combination of the gas engine and the battery power pack, the total power output goes to 357-hp with the AWD setup. The total driving range turns out to be 30 miles. The 2017 BMW i8 remains distinguished sports car with an appealing eco-friendly inclination.

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Features

8.6/10

There’s only one trim for the 2017 BMW i8, with 2+2 seating. Although, the automaker has provided two optional trim packages, the Giga world, and the Tera world. The Giga world comes with upgraded LED headlights, turbine-style wheels, and premium leather upholstery. While the Tera world offers a special interior with leather upholstery and unique cloth.

Trim Packages GIGA WORLD TERA WORLD
MSRP $1,43,400 $1,47,900
Features

19-inch BMW iLight Alloy Turbine wheel (20-inch Spoke wheels) with mixed tires

20-inch BMW iLight Alloy Turbine wheel with mixed tires.
Light Eucalyptus Wood Trim and Giga Cassia Nature Leather & Carum Spice Grey Wool Cloth

Dalbergia Brown interiors with Cloth

LED Headlights with Cornering Lights. Black Brake Calipers.

Also, the 2017 i8 base model comes with the default package named Mega world. The Laserlight headlights are available on all three world packages. The new Protoronic Rd edition comes with a special paint scheme, unique wheels, distinctive seats, and interior details.

We recommend

There isn't a significant price difference between the two listed trims, so its best to go for the higher one, the Tera World. It gets 20-inch wheels, which look handsome.

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Engine

8.4/10

“The 2017 BMW i8 is a stunning coupe with gull-wing doors that hides a slew of advanced technology, though the design may render its energy-efficient plug-in hybrid powertrain all but irrelevant.”- carconnection

Engine and Transmission

Powering the 2017 i8 is a 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor.  There’s a 7.1-kWh lithium-ion battery pack. The gasoline engine drives the rear wheels via six-speed automatic transmission, while the electric motor that sends power to the front wheels comes integrated with two-speed automatic. Together, these power sources churn out 357 hp and 420 pound-feet of peak torque. The engine is configured with all-wheel drive setup.

Models BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
MSRP $24,3400 $16,4900 $10,8310
Engine 1.5L DOHC Turbo 3-Cylinder/Electric 5.2-liter FSI dual-injection V10 Twin-Turbocharged 3.0L Boxer 6 Cylinder
Transmission 6-speed automatic 7-speed automatic 7-speed manual
Power 357hp 540hp 420hp
Torque 420 lb-ft 398 lb-ft 368 lb-ft

 

Acceleration

The BMW i8’s 1.5-liter powertrain takes it to 60 MPH in 4.2 seconds. While the Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK does 0-60 MPH in 3.9 seconds and Audi R8 does the same in 4.0 seconds. The acceleration is impressive in Sport mode, when the i8 uses the power of the gasoline engine.

The electric-only power manages to deliver instant torque but fails to match the zero to 60 mph run record as the all-power sources. In the eDrive mode, BMW i8 uses the gas engine for certain intervals if the accelerator pedal is applied completely.

Models BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
0-60 MPH 4.2 sec 4.0 sec 3.9 sec
Quarter mile 12.6 sec @ 111.8 mph 10.9 sec @ 129 mph 11.8 sec @ 119 mph
Engine 1.5L 5.2L 3.0L
Emission (Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year) 7.0 10.4 7.7

Braking and Handling

Handling the 2017 i8 is quite exceptional as the car gets equally balanced weight and low center of gravity. The adjustable suspension system allows you to firmly dial up the sport settings for going through long routes. You may also use the standard settings for getting through the poor pavements.

Model BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
Brake pads-front(in) 13.4 14.4 13.8
Brake pads Rear(in) 13.0 14 13.0
Curb weight(lbs) 3455 3737 3219
60-0 MPH (ft.) 108 111 103

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Fuel Economy

8.6/10

The BMW i8 delivers very impressive fuel economy. The EPA estimates for 2017 i8 include 15 miles for sole-electric range and a combined fuel economy of 28 mpg. The total driving range is estimated at 330 miles. The variant with both gas and electric is estimated at 76 mpge (miles per gallon equivalent). The Audi R8 offers 14 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway. Meanwhile, Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK delivers fuel efficiency of 22 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway.

Model BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
mpg city 28 14 22
mpg highway 29 22 28
mpg combined 28 17 24

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Interior

8.9/10

The BMW i8 is a fine two-seat coupe, though the rear seats are useless; its interior is well-built, though hardly uber-luxury.” – carconnection

Interior Seating and Comfort

Once you get inside the i8, you’ll notice an advanced and sculpted interior. It is pretty comfy for two people. Though the i8 comes with rear seat, it turns out to be of no use for passengers. Due to the steeply rakes windshield and thick A-pillar, the visibility has been compromised. The scissor doors are cool to touch. The blue accent work is delightful with a couple of led lighting around the cabin. The floating center screen nod gives it a premium appeal.

Model BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
Passenger capacity 4 2 4
Passenger Volume(ft cube) 81 81.0 70.0
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 38.7/56.7/43.1 38.5/55.1/40.9 TBA
Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg) (In.) 32.4/49.6/28.2 N/A TBA

Infotainment

The infotainment displays the surround view of the car and the rear view camera. It also comes fitted with front and rear park distance control. The infotainment system is intuitive, but the specific menu screen makes it slow to respond at times.

You’ll witness more connectivity options while the power points are limited to a single USB port and a 12-volt outlet. Some of the major infotainment features are as follows:

  • AUX Input
  • Bluetooth Audio and Phone
  • Navigation Points of interest
  • Real-time traffic
  • Real-time weather
  • Voice command
  • USB

Cargo Space

You’ll not find much cargo space in the rear as space has been compromised with the design styling. There’s negligible room for small luggage. You won’t even find storage in the front. Since the backseats are narrow, so you can use them as storage instead of seating. The i8 is most practical for two people.

Model BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
Trunk volume (ft.cube) 4.7 8.0 5.1

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Exterior

9.1/10

“The BMW i8 is simply one of the most stunning cars we know of, both stylish and original; pretty much everyone who sees it loves it.” – carconnection

Design and Styling

The 2018 BMW i8 is capable of drawing lots of attention with is distinguished design styling. You’ll find many onlookers taking pictures with the striking “bird wing” doors. The packages available with the i8 offer unique package of design and advanced technology. The coupe looks futuristic with the unique pair if narrow fin trial flowing through the back edges. The i8’s face gets twin-kidney grille with blue accent highlight. While other parts of the front, rear, and door sills receive shiny piano black color.

Model BMW i8 Audi R8 Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK
curb weight(lbs) 3455 3737 3219
Length(in) 184.9 174.3 177.1
Width(in) 76.5 76.4 72.9
Height(in) 50.8 48.8 51
Ground clearance(in) 4.6 4.4 4.3
Wheel base(in) 110.2 104.1 96.5
Track width(in) F/R 64.7/67.8 64.5/63.0 60.7/61.3

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Safety

 

  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC)
  • ABS And Driveline Traction Control
  • Side Impact Beams
  • Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Seat-Mounted Side Airbags
  • BMW Assist eCall Emergency S.O.S
  • Front And Rear Parking Sensors
  • Forward Collision and Rear Collision
  • Tire Specific Low Tire Pressure Warning
  • Dual Stage Driver And Passenger Front Airbags
  • Airbag Occupancy Sensor
  • Driver And Passenger Knee Airbag
  • Outboard Front Lap And Shoulder Safety Belts -inc: Pretensioners
  • Back-Up Camera
  • All Side Camera

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Competition

2017 BMW i8 VS Audi R8

The BMW i8 and the Audi R8 are the flagship models for the German automakers from Munich and Ingolstadt, respectively. Both cars play in the supercar segment, but with a different approach. The i8 is a progressive hybrid sports car, while the R8 has gained a supercar status thanks to its high-powered V10 engine, and its supercar-like design.

Both are supercars built by companies at the top of their games, but they take extremely different approaches to how they make their performance. The i8 has technology no other car under a million dollars has, it’s made mostly from carbon fiber, it’s all-wheel drive and it’s mid-engined. Many also believe the i8 has exotic looks just like the R8, yet the R8 will certainly win in a straight line comparison.

2017 BMW i8 VS Porsche 911 Carrera S PDK

If you’re buying a sports car, then ultimate driving thrills will be at the top of your shopping list – and in this respect, the 911 remains unrivaled. With its agile and adjustable handling, strong performance and scintillating soundtrack, the Porsche is one of the most engaging and involving cars money can buy. However, the hi-tech i8 shows that the 911 will have to evolve if it wants to stay on top in the future.

 

2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid Final Verdict

The dual nature of i8 is the most interesting thing to see. The coupe is offering emission-free and notable handling dynamics that a sport car buyer seek. Perhaps, the only disappointing factor for i8 is longer distances. BMW i8 is limited with its driving range.

When driven through the protracted periods, the petrol engine fails to recharge the battery fast enough. You may feel frustrated with no performance on long roads. The majority of BMW i8 buyers will get attracted towards its design philosophy. This is one of few gas-electric hybrid cars that can be considered right from the heart.

Pros

Powerful gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain

Exclusive Protronic red edition

Futuristic spaceship exterior design approach

Cons

Brake pedal gives a soft feel

Difficulty with getting in and out

What's New?

New Protronic Red model

Carbon-fiber interior trim

Unique black seats with red stitching


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$143400

bodystyle

2dr Coupe

passenger capacity

4

top speed

98 mph

drivetrain

AWD

engine type

displacement

91 cu. in.

horsepower

357 hp @ 5800 rpm

torque

236 lb.-ft. @ 3700 rpm

transmission

6-speed automatic

chassis

suspension front

independent front double wishbone suspension

suspension rear

independent rear multi-link suspension

brake rotors (f/r)

13 in. ventilated disc brakes/13.4 in. ventilated disc brakes

dimensions

wheelbase

110.2 in.

length

184.9 in.

width

76.5 in.

height

50.8 in.

curb weight

3455 lbs.

ground clearance

4.6 in.

capacity

passenger volume

81 cu ft.

cargo volume

4.7 cu ft.

towing capacity

6000 lbs.

payload capacity

620 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

4.4 sec.

standing ¼-mile

12.9 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

NA/28/NA mpg

warranty

basic warranty

4 years/50000 miles

drivetrain warranty

4 years/50000 miles

corrosion warranty

12 years/unlimited

roadside assistance

yes



Styles

 2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid in Sophisto Gray Metallic color  2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid in Ionic Silver Metallic color  2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid in Crystal White Pearl Metallic color
Sophisto Gray Metallic

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

8.6

Engine

8.4

Fuel Economy

8.6

Interior

8.9

Exterior

9.1

Comfort

6.3

Driving

8.1

8.3

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2017 BMW i8 plug-in hybrid 2dr Coupe AWD

2dr Coupe AWD

power
357 hp @ 5800 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (required)
mpg
N/A

$143,400


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
2dr Coupe AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A) Starting at $143,400 MSRP N/A 357 hp @ 5800 rpm, 1.5 L, I3, premium unleaded (required)
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic all wheel drive 4 NA

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