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2015 BMW i8 Prices and Details Announced in Frankfurt

By: Jeff Youngs, 9/11/2013
At the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show, BMW officially introduced the new 2015 i8 model, a plug-in hybrid sports car that arrives in the United States next year. In addition to making all details about the car public, including what it looks like without camouflage to disguise the car's exterior design, the company announced what it will cost to own the most technically sophisticated BMW ever built: $136,625 including the $925 destination charge.

Equipped with 2+2 seating and gull-wing doors, the 2015 BMW i8 merges BMW Twin Power engine technology with BMW ePower technology for the first time. A turbocharged, 1.5-liter 3-cylinder engine rated to make 231 horsepower and 236 lb.-ft. of torque drives the sports car's rear wheels through a 6-speed automatic transmission. A 96-kW electric motor fed by a 5-kWh Lithium-ion battery drives the BMW i8's front wheels using a 2-stage automatic transmission.

Together, the i8's powertrain makes 362 horsepower and 420 lb.-ft. of torque, which accelerates the 3,285-pound car to 60 mph in about 4.4 seconds with the Driving Experience Control knob twisted to Sport mode, according to BMW. Push the eDrive button and the i8 covers 22 miles using only the electricity from the battery. Additional settings include a Comfort mode and two EcoPro modes for both electric and hybrid driving modes.

The new 2015 BMW i8 rides on 20-inch lightweight aluminum wheels and a Dynamic Damper Control suspension, and is constructed of aluminum and carbon-fiber reinforced plastic. The car's bodywork adheres to what BMW calls "the layering principle," and slips through the atmosphere with a 0.26 coefficient of drag. That's the same level of drag exhibited by the current Audi A6.

Buyers can choose between four exterior colors and four interior environments. Leather, iDrive navigation, and full digital instrumentation come standard. Options include a BMW i Home Charging station, BMW Online services, head-up display, and, in markets where they are legal, laser headlights. A Driver Assistant package is also optional, including a reversing camera, Surround View camera, High Beam Assistant technology, and a collision warning system with pedestrian recognition and an autonomous braking function.

BMW says the new 2015 i8 model will go on sale in the United States in the spring of 2014.

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