Barely a year after the unveiling of the 2+2-seater BMW i8 Concept, BMW i is presenting the second variant of this innovative hybrid sports car. The Spyder Concept is a two-seater, open top variant with the same architecture but with a lot more curb appeal. Among the most eye-catching features of the BMW i8 Concept Spyder are the upward-swivelling, windowless doors.
The i8 Concept Spyder is based on the LifeDrive architecture seen in the first i8, underpinned by a lightweight modular construction and the use of high-quality high-tech materials. The i8 Concept Spyder is a plug-in hybrid powered by an eDrive drivetrain, combining a high-performance electric motor and an internal combustion engine. The lithium-ion battery supplying the motor with power can be recharged in an extremely short amount of time from any domestic power socket. Together, the car’s minimized weight, low center of gravity and finely judged balance couple with a combined system to output up to 354 horsepower.
That is enough to accelerate the BMW i8 Concept Spyder from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in five seconds on the way to an electronically governed top speed of 250 km/h (155 mph). Despite this performance, the two-seater burns just three liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (equivalent to fuel economy of 94 mpg imp) in the European test cycle.
Compared with the Coupe variant of the BMW i8 Concept, the BMW i8 Concept Spyder has a slightly shorter wheelbase and overall length, but what makes the Spyder special is the open air driving experience.
The front end offers a particularly revealing window into the open-top two-seater’s dynamic talent. One defining element is the headlights with pioneering laser light technology, which follow the hallmark BMW i U-shaped design template. A semi-transparent “V” opens out from the front end of the flat bonnet towards the windscreen and beckons the eye to the electric motor below. A spoiler lip positioned on the windscreen frame guides the airflow over the heads of the passengers. And, for journeys when the weather cannot quite be trusted, the planned two-section folding roof might well come in handy.
A visually imposing rear diffuser, three-dimensional air outlets and the U-shaped rear lights give the BMW i8 Concept Spyder an extremely wide appearance and emphasizes its sporting credentials.
The i8 Concept Spyder’s headline feature is a transparent rear cover revealing the two folded electric kickboards stowed below. Adopting the hallmarks of BMW i design, the kickboards are perfect for relaxed cruising along promenades and paths or around city squares.
Short front and rear overhangs and a low-slung silhouette define the side view of the BMW i8 Concept Spyder and underline its athletic character. Alluring lines and forms generate a strong forward-surging stance even before the car powers off the line. The doors, which open by pivoting forwards around the A-pillar axis, further enhance the BMW i8 Concept Spyder’s emotional impact. Below the doors, the side skirts create a powerful wedge shape, which opens out towards the rear. At the same time, the open-top two-seater cuts a light and flowing figure and appears as if carved from a single mould.
There is no doubt that if BMW were to build the i8 Concept Spyder, the legions of well heeled BMW loyalists and supercar aficionados would be lined up for their chance to own one.
Original Source: BMW Blog/Manny Antunes