The i8 is a plug-in hybrid sports car that uses a plastic passenger compartment which is reinforced by carbon fibre. Details now expose BMW’s intention to upgrade the hybrid engine and it could see a 10 per cent increase in power output. This includes reworking the three cylinder 1.5-litre mill to make a combined power figure that’s close to 420bhp. With already 362bhp on tap, the hike in power will only make the i8 quicker. Especially when it will be using the six-speed ‘box that is also slated for tweaks.
The laundry list of advancements would eventually result in an even faster car because the automatic transmission having six-speed will be subjected to upgrade as well. As of now, the car hits 62 miles per hour in 4.4 seconds. As far as battery packs are concerned, the capacity of the latest batteries isn’t disclosed yet. But the battery pack is most likely to remain unaltered. The safety car has already experimented with the inductive wireless charging system, HALO, which has been engineered by Qualcomm, a partner of BMW. So, we can expect it to appear in the new BMW i8 as well.
Apart from the changes to the hybrid engine, the German manufacturer is also working on a revised battery pack for an overall extended range. Although, BMW is tight-lipped regarding the details, the company had disclosed that the i8 Formula E safety car has been equipped with a larger 10kWh instead of the 7.1kWh unit, currently being used on the road going version. The same can be expected in the upcoming facelift.
The facelifted i8 is expected to be unveiled later this year and could also coincide with the introduction of the long–awaited roadster version.