Updates of the BMW i8 gives it more electric range and power
Among the best car manufacturers, BMW is well known across the world for its top quality brand as a car with almost every feature you may looking for. BMW, the giant German auto manufacturer is set to make serious changes on the i3 and i8 hybrid cars, in the next 18 months. Currently, BMW is testing an upgraded petrol electric engine on a fleet of prototypes at the Formula E events in different parts of the world. Apart from touching on the hybrid car’s engine, BMW i8 is set to undergo a facelift in some of its parts.
Although the top management is tight lipped on this issue, sources have indicated that the i8 is likely to be more efficient thanks to a power boost on its powerful engine. Additionally, the management intends to do an overhaul on the car’s battery pack in order to improve its longevity and performance. It is therefore reasonable to say that after these upgrades, the price of this hybrid car will be high in the end. This means that for yet another time, you can expect your favourite car model to come through for you.
Main Target Areas in the Upgrade
Petrol Electric Powertrain- With electric cars becoming a common phenomenon, there are ongoing tests of the 1.5 litre-petrol electric powertrain in different Formula events. High level technicians with stationed in Munich have confirmed that the revised powertrain will be more powerful as it will have an electric motor better than the 129 bhp unit in the current i8. The performance of the hybrid car will improve in the long run by around 10%. The current i8 has a system output of 357hp, but with the upgraded model, it is expected that the total output will be about 430hp.
Six Speed Gearbox- Incorporation of this six speed gearbox is said to aid in improving i8 Coupe’s performance. This is in terms of boosting the car’s speed, moving faster than the current i8 that is able to attain 62mph in under 4.4 seconds. The 2018 i8 is expected to have a top speed of 155mph in the same time frame.
New Battery Pack- Being part of the electric car revolution, the 2018 i8 is expected to have a new battery pack that can be charged using a wireless charger. The upgraded i8 could benefit greatly from a larger 10kWh lithium ion battery, discarding its current 7.1 kWh cells that it was launched with. 10kWh lithium batteries have high energy density properties. The new battery pack will give a better range contributing to the ever increasing ranges of hybrid and electric vehicles. Moreover, first time owners of the new i8 will benefit from a wireless charging unit being developed by Qualcomm. The wireless charging system uses induction plates planted to the floor in order to charge the car’s batteries through resonant magnetic induction. Energy is transferred between the plates planted on the ground to a collector, fitted on i8’s belly. However this is optional, although if the different markets accept this technology, it could be the beginning to the traditional plug’s end.
Carbon Fibre Wheels- Word on the streets has that BMW is experimenting with carbon fibre wheels and an aluminium rim finger. This is aimed at cutting down the car’s weight by around 25%, compared to the current i8 which uses aluminium wheels. The front wheels are expected to be 245/35 and the back to be 285/30. All the tires will be supplied by Michelin. In addition to this, the giant manufacturer intends to give the 2018 i8 a new front and back suspension. There are ongoing tests on the safety of such suspensions on its Formula E cars.
Release Date and Price
A number of factors could see the car launched in the last quarter of 2017 or in the start of 2018. They include; the possibility of BMW adopting the wireless charging system being developed by Qualcomm and the effects of the launch of i8 Road coaster, whose launch date seem to coincide with that of the new i8 Coupe. The auto manufacturer’s chairman recently confirmed that the i8 Road coaster would be the last BMW car under the company’s i brand. However, the upgraded BMW i8 is set to be the game changer for the sports car sector in the long run. This is because of its stunning looks, reduced running costs and a fantastic performance that will see it dominate the supercar market for long in.