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Drive and efficiency of the BMW i8.

Thanks to innovative LifeDrive vehicle architecture, the BMW i8 is able to achieve ideal weight-optimisation through an extremely low centre of gravity and 50:50 axle distribution. The perfect basis for the construction of a classic sports car. When the extraordinary combination of an electric motor and a powerful petrol engine are also taken into consideration, this sets the foundation for the most innovative sports car of our time.

Innovative drive concept.

The sporty character of the BMW i8 is evident everywhere, thanks to the vehicle’s intelligent drive control system. Its combustion engine and electric drive interact precisely, whilst the exceptional control of all flows of energy result in an optimal combination of efficiency and dynamics.

Powerful plug-in hybrid system

BMW eDrive

Optional Charging


All-wheel drive.

In eDrive mode, the BMW i8 drives entirely on electric power, while Hybrid mode allows the intelligent combination of two types of drive that provide optimal traction in every situation. The electric motor, with a powerful 131hp (96 kW), is located on the front axle. The rear axle is driven by an authoritative three-cylinder petrol engine generating 231hp (170 kW). All four wheels can be powered simultaneously by two engines and – depending on the driving situation – the advantages of front or all-wheel-drive utilised. In extra-urban environments, the fully-fledged all-wheel-drive in the BMW i8 comes into its own – at speeds of up to 155mph (electronically limited).

Driving modes.

A variety of modes provide choice between driving experiences. COMFORT, ECO PRO and SPORT allow you to adapt to the driving situation, while the eDrive button optimises the vehicle accordingly. Purely electrical driving is possible up to a range of 22 miles, whilst an athletic sports car feeling can be experienced on the open road. Between the two lies the best of both worlds. The petrol engine and electric motor constantly demonstrate a harmonious relationship. 


ECO PRO mode

SPORT mode

eDrive button



Through a combination of a streamlined bodyshell, conical shape, low weight and a range of aerodynamically-optimised characteristics, the BMW i8 represents the pinnacle of dynamics.


Aerodynamic features

Intelligent lightweight construction.

Consistent lightweight construction is of vital importance for electric vehicles. It is one of the vehicle’s most expressive traits and influences dynamics, design and efficiency. A lower vehicle weight means faster acceleration, higher agility and maximum efficiency. 

Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic (CFRP)

LifeDrive architecture

50:50 axle load distribution

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