BMW to drop different (hotter!) powertrain into i8?
The head of product management at BMW i has revealed that the Munich-based brand is considering creating a “more powerful version” of the i8, hinting that the plug-in hybrid sportscar could even gain a completely different powertrain.
Speaking to Auto Express, Alexander Kotouc said that there was demand for a high-performance derivative of the i8 (for the record, the standard model completes the obligatory 0-100 km/h dash in a claimed 4,4 seconds).
“I can tell you at this point we are still evaluating it; the i8 is the iconic sports car of the new era.
“Yes, there is customer demand for a more powerful version, but it needs to make sense for our brand,” Kotouc told the British publication.
“You could put a V12 in there and it would be incredibly powerful, but would it still be a BMW i car? We need to find the perfect balance,” he added.
The freshly facelifted i8 coupé – which was revealed alongside the new i8 Roadster – has had its electric motor’s maximum output hiked by nine units to 105 kW (taking peak system output from 266 kW to 275 kW). The 1,5-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine, meanwhile, has an unchanged output of 170 kW.
Auto Express furthermore reported that Kotouc said either this existing powertrain could have its peak power boosted or the i8 could gain a “completely different engine”.
“There is a customer need and desire to have more power and we will try to fulfil it while also keeping our DNA authentic,” Kotouc said.