The 2016 BMW i8 blends a stunning coupe design with a slew of advanced technology underneath; the plug-in hybrid powertrain, and its corresponding efficiency, may be all but irrelevant.
The 2016 BMW i8 attracts attention for its exterior looks, but the technical wizardry in the plug-in hybrid powertrain should turn heads just the same. It could be powered by coal and ground-up baby seals and it'd still be viewed with awe and admiration by crowds gathered around to watch its "bird wing" side doors pivot up and out of the way. Nearly anyone feels like a celebrity when they're behind the wheel of an i8.
The i8's running gear is truly unique. When was the last time a stunning two-door came with a charge cord to plug it into a wall outlet? And a three-cylinder engine? The classic design cues are merely there to point out that it's possible to blend energy efficiency with both style and performance. And that makes the i8 a car unlike any other.
Its mission is to respond to what BMW says is the desire to enter "a new era of sustainable performance." And its highest-tech features may be its construction, with a body shell made of carbon-fiber reinforced plastic that attaches to an aluminum chassis that absorbs crash energy and carries the powertrain. Then there's the battery pack, the electric motor, and the three-cylinder engine too.