Crawling out is like some awkward Yoga move

The BMW i8 is a beautiful car. It attracts attention like a light bulb attracts moths. Open the butterfly doors, and heads really start to turn. All eyes are on the sexy supercar and whoever is about to slide out. Is it James Bond? Maybe a real-life celebrity? No, it’s just me and my 30-year-old joints that somehow feel 60 when crawling over the i8’s high and wide doorsill. It’s a move best left to those who hit the gym more than the buffet. Yeah, it definitely takes some practice to gracefully exit the i8. Getting in isn’t much easier, either – that is, unless you’ve got the choreography down tighter than the folks in Cirque de Soleil.

Embellishments aside, the i8 can be challenging to enter and exit, especially for the first time. The open butterfly door and low roof provide a couple great spots to induce a migraine and the high doorsill and low-slug dashboard mean you’ve got to fold up before sliding in. Making the exit routine challenging is the height difference between that doorsill and the seats. Like other cars with a carbon fiber tub, the seats sit low and far inboard, making the journey out a game of endurance and stretching.

Nevertheless, it didn’t take long before I figured out the best way to get into the i8. After opening the door, I sort of led with my right foot into the footwell then sat on the doorsill. Then with a grip on the steering wheel, I slid inward with my left leg trailing behind. Impressively, my short(ish) arms were easily able to reach the door handle to pull it closed.. Once inside, the i8 feels awesome, and for the most part, would be comfortable in an all-day roadtrip.

Getting out takes a different strategy. Pushing the electronic release on the door and giving it a slight nudge with the left elbow sends it skyward. (The doors are impressively light and well-sprung.) I then use the same elbow to push against the doorsill to pry my butt from the seat and on to the sill. At that point, I can swing my left leg out of the car, followed by a pivot and then my right leg. With some practice, it becomes second nature. After all, nobody wants to buy a supercar only to look like the guy in the video below!

Stay tuned for more on my time with the 2017 BMW i8

How the first exit attempt feels in the BMW i8


BMW i8

2015 BMW i8 High Resolution Exterior
- image 522681

Read our review on the BMW i8.

Highs & Lows: 2017 BMW i8 Exterior
- image 728534

Read more about the highs and lows on the BMW i8.

Mark McNabb
Mark McNabb was a contributor at TopSpeed from 2013 to 2018. Growing up, Mark always had a mind for tinkering on random items throughout his home and dad’s garage, including a 1953 Ford Mainline and 1971 Corvette Stingray.  Read More
About the author
What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: