A Tesla Roadster Challenger?
The BMW i8 is a plug-in hybrid currently, but that could change with the next generation of the car. According to Autocar, sources within BMW said the next i8 would go electric. This honestly isn’t too surprising. BMW has been heavily investing in electric technology, and the company would also have a tie-in with its efforts in Formula E.
What exactly the powertrain of the next i8 will be is not yet known. However, Autocar reports that it will likely be a lithium-ion battery pack.
There are other options out there, but BMW doesn’t seem to think the other battery technology is mature enough for the next i8. This would mean lithium ion is the way to go. Solid state battery technology is close, and could dramatically move electric car technology forward, but it’s still a ways off from being production car ready.
An obvious competitor to the i8 if it went all electric is the new Tesla Roadster. The BMW i8 would really need to make the i8 a performance machine if it were to compete with Tesla’s Roadster, though. Tesla’s little car is said to be able to do a 0-60 mph sprint in just 1.9 seconds.
Autocar makes it clear that this new information is not set in stone. Previously, it was hinted that the i8 would get 600 hp from a hybrid powertrain. Basically, BMW said it would replace the car’s current three-cylinder engine with a more powerful one. That would make it more interesting, but with the way BMW is going, we expect it to take the i8 electric.