It’s a Hard Test
There are some cars that you never see, and the BMW i8 is one of them. The gullwinged, low-slung sports car is an eco warrior that’s also a flamboyant coupe.
It ticks all the boxes, gets great mileage and looks a lot of fun. It isn’t without its limitations, though: the dihedral scissor doors make it difficult to get in and out of. The brakes lack bite and feel and it’s a shame because the car’s dynamism and low centre of gravity are excellent.
What You Need to Know
The i8 is a hybrid powertrain that uses both petrol and electric motors to drive the wheels. As you drive, the petrol engine works alongside the electric motor and battery to repower the electric motor as required.
EV mode is the default setting, which means it’ll switch between using both engines, but you can select Comfort mode to use the combustion engine when you need to. This will help the car to feel even more spirited.
Fuel economy is impressive, with an official NEDC figure of 35mpg. It’s far from the best in class, but it does show that it can be used to cover a lot of miles with minimal fuss.
It’s a hard car to get in and out of, but once you’ve got it down it’s a lot of fun to drive. It feels like you’re driving a racecar that’s got an automatic gearbox and it can be a blast to drive fast.