BMW's i8 drops its top, gets more perk

BMW's i8 drops its top, gets more perk

BMW's i8 drops its top, gets more perk

Inside, the i8 Coupe's 2+2 configuration is eschewed in favor of a two-seat layout for the i8 Roadster, which features a claimed 3.2 cu. -ft. The 2019 BMW i8 Roadster and coupe both go on sale next spring.

Inside, the cabin gets an updated steering wheel, a multifunction instrument display and an 8.8-inch freestanding touch screen.

BMW has modified the windscreen as well in order to accommodate the new roof.

Speaking of the battery, its capacity rises from 7.1 to 11.6kWh. The automobiles also get an additional 12 horsepower out of the system bringing it up the total to 369 horsepower.

These numbers mean that while Elon Musk's new Tesla Roadster can promise a 0-60 run in 1.9 seconds, the i8 family remains on the conservative side with a time of 4.2 seconds for the Coupe, and 4.4 for the Roadster. Top speed will be electronically-limited to 155 miles per hour. The combined power output of 369bhp and 570Nm is channelled through a six-speed automatic gearbox to the rear wheels. Improved efficiency measures give the BMW i8 an expected MPGe of 70 and BMW believes that the Roadster will retain that same fuel efficiency.

They're finally here: the BMW i8 Roadster and the BMW i8 Coupe, both updated and hitting the market next year.

In a win for lightweight design, the roof's aluminium connecting elements are produced in a new 3D printing process.

Interestingly enough, it stows in a perpendicular position behind the passengers. And like the coupe, the i8 Roadster boasts upward-swinging "gullwing" doors that further emphasize this a sports auto as not just another innovative vehicle, but rather art on wheels.

When it was shown as a concept - then called the i8 Spyder - it was unclear just what sort of roof it would have; now we know it gets a folding ragtop that tucks out of sight without eating up too much cargo space. This allows for geometric parts that can not be cast for the optimum strength and size to be used, balancing weight with rigidity requirements.

BMW has not released any information about pricing for either the new roadster or the new version of the coupe, but the latter used to start at $135,000. A Tera World Copper interior trim featuring premium cloth and leather upholstery in an Amido/E-Copper color scheme is new and exclusive to the Roadster. On the outside, a slightly lower hood hump now includes a so-called "air-shutter", and there are new sets of wheels available, with the optional 20-inch being a tad lighter than before.

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