Upgraded battery pack should bring more EV range
The BMW i8 hybrid coupe is reportedly due for an update that will result in more power and a revised battery pack for added range.
The report comes from BMWBLOG, which claims the hybrid system’s total output will be rated at 372 hp, up from 357 hp. It’s unclear where the added power will come from. In its current form, the i8’s 1.5-liter turbocharged I-3 makes 228 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque and is supplemented by a 129-hp front motor along with an 8-hp rear motor. BMW claims the 2017 i8 goes from 0-60 mph in 4.2 seconds, so expect that number to drop a tad with the revised powertrain.
The report also suggests BMW will upgrade the i8’s 7.1 kilowatt-hour battery pack for one that’s 10.0 kW-hrs. The larger battery pack is already in use for the BMW i8 Formula E safety car, which may also have the revised and stronger powertrain. The increased battery capacity should increase the i8’s all-electric range, which is currently around 15 miles (24.1 km). Earlier this year, BMW updated the i3 electric vehicle with a more powerful battery that increased range to an estimated 114 miles (183.5 km), about 33 miles (53.1 km) more than before.
Expect the revised i8 to arrive in showrooms next year. BMW is also slated to unveil the i8 convertible in 2018, a body style that’s been delayed numerous times due to engineering challenges.