Thursday, April 05, 2012

BMW i8 Spyder - Powered by Lithium


Debut: The BMW i8 Concept Spyder

Earlier today BMW unveiled details about the third element of its “i” range, the BMW i8 Concept Spyder.

This hybrid convertible follows the BMW i3 Concept and BMW i8 Concept in a line of purpose-built alt-fuel vehicles. The Spyder is a two-seat roadster with fuel consumption “no higher than you would expect from a small car,” according to BMW.

The plug-in hybrid pairs a lithium-ion battery electric motor and conventional combustion engine for 354 horsepower output and a 0-62mph sprint time of 5 seconds. Top speed: 155mph.

The car remains virtually untested by outside parties–it is a concept, after all–but BMW says it consumes only 3 litres of gas per 100 kilometers (this in European testing) and that it’ll charge in fewer than two hours, with a range of 19 miles on the electric-only mode.

The car is chock-full of new BMW technology, from the iPhone-enabled finders that pinpoint charging stations and parking spots to 3D console screens and high-sensitivity monitoring systems that alert drivers to precisely how much power the car is using. Sport mode and eco-mode are other drive options.

As you can see from the photos, the car features an aggressive, progressive design with verticle-hinged windowless doors and seats for two–this in contrast to the 2+2 seating we saw in the i8 coupe last year. The BMW i8 Concept Spyder is also slightly shorter across the wheelbase and overall length than its predecessor.

BMW says its exceptionally low center of gravity and extreme lightweightness combine to give the car excellent driving dynamism. Goody.

Here are the rest of the initial specifications:

Length/Height/Width: L 4480 mm, H 1208 mm, W 1922 mm
Wheelbase: 2650 mm
Seats: 2
Curb weight: 1630 kg (3593 pounds)
Top speed: 250 km/h (155 mph)
Acceleration: 0-100 km/h (62 mph) 5.0 seconds; 80-120 km/h (50-75 mph) 4.0 seconds
System output: 260 kW / 550 Nm 
Fuel consumption: 3 l/100km / 94 mpg imp
Electric range: 27-30 km (17 – 19 miles)
Battery charge time: 1.45 hours
Luggage compartment: 100 litres
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