BMW i

BMW i

Posted on by Austin Taylor  

The new BMW i8 is the brand’s most innovative and technologically advanced model yet. This plug-in hybrid combines efficiency with sports car performance, futuristic looks, and plenty of BMW luxury. Perhaps the first thing to catch consumers’ minds is the raw technology behind this design. This plug-in hybrid setup combines a 1.5-liter, inline three-cylinder, gas engine with two electric motors for motivation. In July 2014, BMW announced that it will auction off a special Concours d’Elegance Edition i8 to build upon the excitement about the model.

Things get a little tricky when adding the i8’s powertrain together. A six-speed automatic transmission drives the rear wheels, while an electric motor powers the front wheels through a two-speed automatic. An additional, smaller electric motor provides additional power to the rear wheels but mostly acts as a generator to top off the battery.

Confused yet? The bottom line is that this all works in harmony to create 357 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. BMW claims a 0-to-60 time of only 4.2 seconds, with a top speed of 155 mph. A BMW-like 50/50 weight distribution ensures amazing balance and handling.

While all of this is enough to get excited about, BMW wants to take luxury and customization a step further with a special Concours d’Elegance Edition to be introduced and auctioned off at the Pebble Beach Auto Show in August 2014.

Updated 08/18/2014: The i8 Concours d’Elegance Edition sold at auction for a whopping $825,000.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8 Concours d’Elegance Edition.

Note: Current BMW i8 pictured here.

There’s been a lot of talk about BMW’s plan to expand the i range beyond the current i3 hatchback and i8 sports car. A larger i5 to slot above the i3 , for instance, has been in the rumor mill since last year. More recently though, certain reports are talking about an i9, essentially a plug-in hybrid supercar , placed atop the brand-new i8. The new vehicle will arrive in 2016, German outlet Auto Motor and Sport reports, just in time to celebrate BMW’s 100th anniversary.

Reportedly developed as a spiritual successor to the iconic M1 built between 1978 and 1981, the i9 will be a beefed-up version of the i8 with a more aggressive design and a more potent hybrid drivetrain. Naturally, the i9 will benefit from the same 50:50 weight distribution as the i8, while extensive use of carbon-fiber and aluminum will help keep weight in the 3,300-pound area in spite of its larger gasoline engine and electric motor.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 BMW i9.

This is it, BMW . Years of research, testing, and development has culminated in the upcoming release of the new BMW i8 . With the arrival of BMW’s first plug-in hybrid supercar drawing closer and closer, the German automaker has launched a global campaign to showcase the history of the i8, from its genesis as a concept vehicle all the way to its arrival in dealerships in August 2014. The campaign began on May 9th and will run the gamut of media platforms, ranging from TV spots and print ads, all of which tell the story of a car that has, in so many ways, become synonymous with BMW technology.

The unquestioned star of this campaign is the i8, putting the focus on the hybrid supercar ’s design, performance, and innovation. If anything, BMW is pulling out all the stops with this media blitz, enlisting Gus Van Sant, the man behind Oscar-winning films such as “Good Will Hunting," “Milk” and “My Private Idaho," to direct the three TV spots, namely "Genesis," "Powerful Idea," and "Attitude".

Complementing the TV spots will be a series of seven print ads that highlight the i8’s attributes as a real car for the ages. Like Van Sant’s work on the TV spots, these print ads carry the cache of being photographed by renowned photographer Uwe Düttmann.

If there was any question as to how important the BMW i8 is to the Bavarian automaker, the fact that the company is going to this length to promote the hybrid supercar tells you that the i8 could very well be one of those iconic cars that defines this BMW generation.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8.

The BMW i8 , by all accounts, is a pretty incredible ride. It looks sexy as hell; it’s got an advanced powertrain; and the technology used on the hybrid sports car is arguably second-to-none. All that being said, even the i8 is entitled to a bad day or two, and as this video painfully shows, one of those bad days reared its ugly head during a recent testing session at the Nurburgring.

At the start, the i8 looks to have been running smoothly, effortlessly stretching its legs while weaving around one of the world’s most famous race tracks. But during one run down a straight, the i8 slows down and drives into a patch of grass on the side.

We don’t know exactly what happened to the i8, but it doesn’t look like it was part of the testing script. Maybe it lost power, or there were some mechanical glitches in that weave of wiring inside the car. But something happened to the i8 because cars like this one don’t slow down on the side of the road for anything.

Any car that gets the kind of attention that the BMW i8 has received is going to be on the radar of a lot of aftermarket companies. It’s not so much a question on if a tuner will build a program for it as it is when somebody will be the first to do it.

Well, it looks like Lumma Design already has the leg up over the competition.

The German tuning firm is jumping in on the i8 phenomenon with a preview of what it plans to do with BMW ’s all-new electric sports car .

Nothing is final as of yet, but the preliminary announcement from Lumma has the i8 receiving a host of high-tech carbon components, including a new front spoiler, new side skirts and a new rear bumper with an integrated diffuser tacked on to it.

In addition, the aptly named CLR I8 program also gets a fancy set of new wheels and the most distinguishable modification of them all, tailor-made stickers — yes, stickers — that change the blue accents on the standard i8 into a shade of green that, quite frankly, looks a lot better than the standard blue hue. And if anything, it goes with the eco-friendliness of the electric hybrid. Just sayin’...

No performance upgrades have been announced, but rest assured we’re going to expect significantly more than the 362-horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque output of the standard i8.

Posted on by Simona  

BMW ’s supercar, the M1 , was sold between 1978 to 1981 as the only mid-engined BMW to be mass produced. But you’d expect more from a maker like BMW, right? And with all the competition on the market, BMW had to do something about it, so they decided to put the Vision Efficient Dynamics Concept unveiled at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show into production.

There is one distinct change for the Vision Efficient Dynamics Concept as it heads into production, as BMW changed its name to the i8. Along with the recently announced i3, the i8 shows the other end of the spectrum that the German automaker can reach with its hybrid drivetrains. The production i8 will, surprisingly, carry the concept’s in-line three-cylinder engine combined with an electric motor to drive the front wheels.

As of now, there is only one i8 model set for production, but we have a sneaking suspicion that there may be an M or M Sport model in coming years.

Updated 05/27/2014: BMW unveiled a new video in which it explains how it optimized dynamics and efficiency for the new i8. Check it out in the "Videos"
tab.

Updated 07/03/2014: BMW announced today packages and options for the i8 hybrid supercar. Among others cool updates, BMW will offer three different worlds for the i8: Giga World priced at $2,000, Pure Impulse World priced at $10,800 and Terra World priced at $3,000.

Click past the jump to read all about the upcoming i8

BMW i3

Everybody has gotten to see the 2015 BMW i3 in all of its glory either in person or here at TopSpeed, but few have actually gotten behind the wheel of this peppy little electric hatchback. That’ll all come to an end when the Consumer Electronics Show kicks off, as BMW will offer test drives of its electric hatchback at CES, starting Tuesday, January 7th at 10:00 a.m. at Silver Lot 3.

In addition to giving prospective buyers the chance to get behind the wheel of the i3, BMW will also reveal official details on its highly automated driving project. Very few details are currently available, but we suspect this will be linked in with the i3 in some manner, maybe a partially automated version of the new model to show off what BMW has in place so far.

Automated driving is the next big step in the automotive world, as Google and GM are already each in the thick of testing their respective automated driving systems. To date, the closest you can come to automated driving is the lane-keeping assistance and adaptive cruise control found on higher end cars. Future driving automation will likely eliminate all human input, with exception to emergency situations where a human has to override a faulty system.

We’ll keep a close eye on what Bimmer is rolling out at CES, and we’ll update you as soon as the details are available.

Click past the jump to see a video of a legally blind man "driving" Google’s automated Prius and to see the full test drive schedule for the i3

We all knew from the time BMW introduced the production i8 that it was going to be one of those cars that redefine the way we appreciate our loves. it’s that revolutionary, and not just by way of all the high-tech goodies it comes with.

But since we’re heading down that road, this is as good a time as any to shine the spotlight on one of the most innovative things about the i8 . And no, we’re not talking about those laser lights that will be a first for a production vehicle. We’re talking about the keyfob, an otherwise unglamorous — yet extremely useful — piece of equipment used on a lot of cars these days.

We all know what keyfobs tend to look like: small, clunky and largely rectangular in shape that serve the sole purpose of having built-in authentication mechanisms, but this one’s unlike anything you’ve seen from a gadget like this.

Ordinarily, key fobs don’t do much in the way of cutting edge design. But the i8 keyfob is different in so many levels, it’s hard too imagine not getting caught up on what it can do.

It can start the BMW i8, that’s for sure. It can also serve to contain lock/unlock buttons, a trunk opener, and sometimes, its own alarm. But the i8’s keyfob’s function doesn’t just end there. It also contains a high-resolution display screen that’s similar to what you can see on a lot of instrument clusters these days. This screen houses some pretty useful information, especially for a hybrid sports car like the i8.

Based on the photo of the i8 keyfob, you can see the range of the sports car before recharging and re-fueling, pretty important information that will allow you to not overcharge your sports car too much. Look closer and you’ll also notice that all-important information on when the car was last charged and whether or not the key fob itself is connected to the i8. On those important capabilities alone, you can already surmise just how revolutionary this keyfob is. Or, as those familiar with those Japanese toys: a Tamagochi, it is not.

But it doesn’t just end there; the i8 keyfob also has a handful of buttons that can be customized specifically to the needs of the owner. It really is tantamount to a mini smartphone with its own re-programmable functions.

For the price it commands — a replacement key fob will cost at least $1,000 — you’d be wise to keep this small yet incredibly sophisticated piece of technology as close to you as possible.

That, in a nutshell, is how best to describe the BMW i8 key fob: small yet incredibly sophisticated...and really, really expensive.

Click past the jump to read about the 2015 BMW i8

Source: BMW Blog

The constant race for innovation comes in its truest form in the auto industry with companies spending millions of dollars in pursuit of that one breakthrough that can redefine the business.

To its credit, BMW may have come to that road with its laser light technology.

Different from the popular LED lights that have become prevalent in the industry, laser lights are being propped as the next evolution in lighting technology, with promises of being safer and more efficient than their LED counterparts.
BMW is tapping into this new technology, which they will use for the first time on the 2015 i8 hybrid sports car , an appropriate choice if there ever was one because of the i8’s own place as its own technologically savant piece.

So why are laser lights safer and more efficient than LEDs? For starters — and this is going to a new level of geekdom, so strap on and try to keep up — laser lights are safer in a sense that they are more focused on what their shining on, which in this case is the road. What this does is reduce the strain caused to oncoming cars, reducing the possibility of angry drivers flipping you the bird as you pass them.

Light strength is another distinct advantage for laser lights, something BMW alludes to in the video above. Compared to light range of standard LEDs, an LED high beam equipped with laser lights is capable of extending that range to an incredible 600 meters (1,970 feet). By comparison, an LED low beam only has a 100-meter (328 feet) range with the high beam at 300 meters (985 feet). Significant stuff right there.

As far as efficiency is concerned, laser lights draw so little energy that they automatically reduce a car’s energy consumption. Laser lights also have smaller lighting diodes, 100 times smaller than the cells used in LEDs, giving BMW designers more flexibility and leeway in designing their lights setup, specifically the ones you’ll find on the i8.

Unfortunately, laser lights don’t come standard on the i8; instead, BMW is offering them as an option for the high-beam mode on the hybrid sports car.

Still and all, its a technology that we’re going to see and hear about in the coming years. That’s what happens when you’re dealing with something that has the potential to be a technological evolution.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 BMW i8

Posted on by Simona  
BMW i8 Concept Spyder

Back in 2012, BMW unveiled the i8 Spyder Concept car , which wasn’t a big surprise considering that the coupe concept appeared ripe for a removable top.

Now, that the i8 Coupe is ready to hit showrooms, potential buyers are waiting for a production version of the i8 Spyder to also hit the market.

A recent report from Bimmerpost suggests that BMW officials have approved the i8 Spyder for production, and that we should see it sometime in late 2015. The same report also suggests that BMW has already unveiled a production-ready model to insiders sometime last Friday. This production model featured a Solar Orange exterior paint — identical to what we’ve seen on the i3 — combined with blue highlights.

Of course the i8 Spyder will share the engine and the technical features with its coupe sibling. The exterior will remain nearly identical to the concept version, but with with the production styling aspects of the i8 Coupe.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8 Coupe.

Source: Bimmerpost

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