There’s a matching BMW i3 to go with it

Proving that it can match fancy with the best automakers in the world, BMW has rolled a one-off BMW i8 that’s dressed up in actual 24-karat gold. The unique creation is called the i8 Starlight Edition, and if you happen to have deep pockets, it can be purchased, provided you end up with the winning bid. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. The BMW i8 Starlight Edition — and the i3 Starlight Edition, for that matter — will be up for auction to benefit the Dagmar and Václav Havel Foundation VIZE 97.

What makes the BMW i8 and i3 Starlight Edition special

2018 BMW i8 and i3 Starlight Edition
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The entire surface of the sports coupe is decked in 23.75-carat gold dust, said to be the maximum allowed for the kind of color consistency BMW was looking for.

The BMW i8 Starlight Edition is special because of one reason: gold. Lots of it, too. The entire surface of the sports coupe is decked in 23.75-carat gold dust, said to be the maximum allowed for the kind of color consistency BMW was looking for.

The process behind the paint job is as painstaking as it sounds. According to Bimmer, the 23.75-carat gold dust was provided by Liebscher Blattgold GmbH, a company in Germany that sells, well, gold. The gold dust procured from the store was then infused to the body, from the front end to the rear section. All told, there are four layers of gold on both the i8 and the i3, with the last layer getting applied manually. The result is a gradient finish that transitions from black to gold, emulating what BMW describes as a “sky full of golden stars.” I’m not one to disagree with something as poetic as that, especially if the final product does justice to the words that are used to describe it.

2018 BMW i8 and i3 Starlight Edition
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Even the car’s interior is dressed up in gold, specifically the dashboard, center console, and a number of trim sections throughout the cabin

Even the car’s interior is dressed up in gold, specifically the dashboard, center console, and a number of trim sections throughout the cabin. The gold touches are complemented by black leather, mimicking the two-tone setup in the exterior. To cap off the car’s exclusivity, BMW added a plaque in the cabin with the words “STARLIGHT EDITION One of One” etched on it.

There are no engine upgrades to speak of, though that shouldn’t come as a surprise given what the car is all about in the first place. This is a visually stunning i8 whose paint finish is more expensive than some of its parts. Regardless, the i8 Starlight Edition is powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine and an electric motor. Together, the hybrid setup helps produce 357 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. It’s mated to a six-speed automatic transmission, which sends all that power to all four wheels, helping the sports coupe sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 4.2 seconds on its way to a top speed of 155 mph.

2018 BMW i8 and i3 Starlight Edition
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Both BMW Starlight Editions aren’t for sale, but as we mentioned, they are up for auction

The i3 Starlight Edition, on the other hand, gets its juice from a synchronous electric motor that produces a maximum output of 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. It’s obviously not as fast as the i8 to 60 mph, but with a time of 7.3 seconds, it can more than hold on its own. Top speed is limited, though, to just 93 mph, which is more than enough for city driving.

Both BMW Starlight Editions aren’t for sale, but as we mentioned, they are up for auction. It’s unclear when the auction will take place. In the meantime, the i8 and i3 Starlight Editions will be appearing at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival from July 4 to 5.

Further reading

BMW Debuts “New” i8 Coupe and the First i8 Roadster Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Weighs just 3,381 pounds

Read our full review on the 2019 BMW i8 Coupe.

2019 BMW i8 Roadster Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Read our full review on the 2019 BMW i8 Roadster.

BMW Unveils 2018 i3 and i3s High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW i3.

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Read more BMW news.

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