BMW yesterday announced its new ‘i’ sub-brand focused on developing sustainable mobility solutions has been launched. Thus far, only two models have been announced, the i8 supercar and the enigmatic Megacity Vehicle, which will be called the i3 in production trim.
Eventually, however, there's expected to be an entire range of vehicles spanning several vehicle segments and featuring everything from range-extended diesel powertrains to all-electric units and even regular gasoline models.
For more on the i sub-brand, check out John Voelcker’s extensive report over at GreenCarReports. What we’re more interested in is the new i8 supercar.
The only official details are that it will feature a plug-in hybrid powertrain blending the sporting ability of a high-performance machine with the fuel consumption and emissions of a small car. This will be thanks in part to its lightweight design. It will come with an aluminum chassis housing the powertrain, while its passenger cell will be made of high-strength but extremely lightweight carbon fiber.
Finally, the car will also get the latest in mobile communications technology grouped under the BMW ConnectedDrive heading.
Production will start in mid 2013 at a BMW plant in Leipzig, Germany. As BMW’s flagship, pricing won’t be cheap, with early estimates hovering around the $200,000 mark. This is not surprising given its likely competition and advanced plug-in hybrid drivetrain.
Prototypes of the i8 are already testing. You can view spy shots of the car in a previous post by clicking here.