The drive of the BMW i8.

The combination of an electric motor and a powerful petrol engine provides the foundation for one of the most innovative sports cars of our time – the BMW i8. The sporty character of the vehicle is evident at all times. Precise interplay between combustion engine and electric drive ensures efficiency and dynamism in equal measure.

A SPORTY LIVE WIRE. The drive of the BMW i8.

The combination of an electric motor and a powerful petrol engine provides the foundation for one of the most innovative sports cars of our time – the BMW i8. The sporty character of the vehicle is evident at all times. Precise interplay between combustion engine and electric drive ensures efficiency and dynamism in equal measure.

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The BMW eDrive technology is the result of many years of BMW EfficientDynamics development work. The full torque of the agile electric motor is available from a standing start and makes for unrivalled driving pleasure. At the same time, an innovative cooling system keeps the high-voltage batteries at their optimum operating temperature, which increases performance and service life.
Intelligent energy management coordinates the interaction between the electric motor with battery and the electric motor with combustion engine, and is always geared towards maximum performance with minimum consumption. The result is a powerful and efficient plug-in hybrid system.

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BMW eDrive as plug-in hybrid.

The first sports car with the fuel consumption of a compact car.

  • Powerful plug-in hybrid system

    Think further to go further. The intelligent eDrive propulsion system of the BMW i8 combines the benefits of an electric motor and a petrol engine as a plug-in hybrid to create an exceptional driving experience: Outstanding efficiency and maximum dynamics are simultaneously possible. The electric drive, a powerful 96 kW (131 hp) motor, is located on the front axle. In contrast, the rear axle is driven by a powerful BMW TwinPower Turbo 1.5-litre 3-cylinder petrol engine with 170 kW (231 hp) of peak performance and up to 320 Nm of torque; combined with the electrical boost of the hybrid system, it guarantees typical BMW driving pleasure. These two drive systems combine to accelerate the BMW i8 from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.4 seconds – with fuel consumption of just 2.1 l per 100 km CO2 emissions of 49 g/km.

  • Intelligent energy management

    The astonishing efficiency of the BMW i8 is a result of the perfect interplay between BMW eDrive technology and petrol engine. How the two system components are utilised is precisely coordinated according to the driving mode and situation in order to meet the specific requirements. At the same time, brake energy regenerated through one-pedal driving and during the deceleration processes ensures an efficient increase in the purely electrical range. The aerodynamically optimised design additionally contributes to the ability of the BMW i8, as a thoroughbred sports car, to achieve consumption and emission figures comparable with those of a compact car.


The BMW TwinPower Turbo 1.5-litre 3-cylinder petrol engine, which was newly developed as part of the BMW EfficientDynamics strategy, unites all the advantages that one would expect from the power unit of a sports car. Its engine management guarantees optimum charge changing processes across the ignition point and ensures a rapid response from the turbocharger. During operation, the 170 kW (231 hp) engine proves to be extremely free-revving and delivers up to 320 Nm of torque. At the same time, the dynamics and the high performance level are accompanied by outstanding efficiency, as demonstrated by the combined consumption of only 2.1 l/100 km and CO2 emissions of 49 g/km.





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Lightweight and compact.

The BMW TwinPower Turbo engine displays a strong performance with low consumption.

  • CO2 disclaimer

    Further information about the official energy and fuel consumption and the official specific CO2 emissions for new passenger automobiles can be found in the "New Passenger Vehicle Fuel Consumption, CO2 Emission And Electric Power Consumption Guidelines", which are available free of charge at all sales outlets and from DAT Deutsche Automobil Treuhand GmbH, Hellmuth-Hirth-Str. 1, 73760 Ostfildern, Germany.

    The exhaust gas of the engine for charging the high-voltage battery meets the EU6 emissions standard. Fuel consumption is determined in accordance with the ECE driving cycle (93/116/EC), made up of approximately one-third urban traffic and two-thirds extra-urban driving (based on the distance covered). CO2 emissions are measured in addition to energy consumption as such. Fuel consumption levels are calculated on the basis of vehicles with standard equipment. Special equipment can have an impact on fuel consumption levels.

    These specifications apply to vehicles on the German market. The models illustrated may, in part, include optional equipment and accessories not fitted as standard. According to the specific requirements of other markets, alterations may occur regarding models, standard and optional equipment as described in the text and illustrations. For precise information, please contact your BMW Partner. Subject to change in design and equipment. Subject to error. Equipment specific to national markets is not represented here.

    Unladen weight (EU) in kg: the figure quoted includes a 90 per cent tank filling, 68 kg for the driver and 7 kg for luggage. Unladen weight applies to vehicles with standard equipment. Optional equipment may increase this figure.

    BMW recommends the use of super unleaded 95 RON fuel. Unleaded RON 91 fuel or higher with a maximum ethanol limit of 10 percent (E10) is also permitted. The combustion engine’s fuel consumption rates listed are based on the use of RON 98 fuel.

    The figures are not based on an individual vehicle and do not constitute part of the product offer; they are provided solely for the purposes of comparison between different vehicle types.

    CO2 emissions caused by the production and provision of fuel or other energy sources are not taken into account in the determination of CO2 emissions pursuant to Directive 1999/94/EC.


A variety of modes for an exceptional driving experience: COMFORT, ECO PRO, SPORT and the eDrive button optimise the vehicle properties of your BMW i8 to suit the driving situation. 100% electric driving is possible up to a range of 37 km* as is an extremely athletic sports car for out-of-town driving. Between the two lies the best of both worlds: the petrol engine and electric motor constantly demonstrate that their technical symbiosis is never a compromise.
Pressing the eDrive button adapts the BMW i8 for purely electric driving. This is possible in the COMFORT and ECO PRO modes. In the COMFORT mode with eDrive, the BMW i8 drives without support from the combustion engine until the battery is almost exhausted. Purely electrical driving at speeds of up to 120 km/h is possible with eDrive. If the button isn’t pressed the combustion engine is activated at 60 km/h.

* Determined in internal BMW consumption studies. The driving range is depending on a variety of factors, especially: personal driving behaviour, selected route, weather conditions, usage of heating/cooling and preconditioning.

  • COMFORT mode

    All the power you need as soon as you drive off. In the COMFORT mode, the fully-charged BMW i8 starts electrically. Purely electrical driving is possible up to approximately 65 km/h, and also covers pulling away from traffic lights and overtaking. At higher speeds, the combustion engine is activated as well and guarantees optimum driving comfort.

  • ECO PRO mode

    The ECO PRO mode allows the BMW i8 to demonstrate its efficiency. The accelerator and transmission as well as the heating and cooling systems are all adjusted to be as efficient as possible. Purely electrical driving is possible up to a speed of 65 km/h. In addition to this, the combustion engine is activated at high speeds or when the battery charge level falls below a specified minimum.

  • SPORT mode

    As an alternative to the transmission setting ‘D’ for automatic driving, the driver can also use the gear lever to change to the SPORT mode. This mode also includes manual gear selection – via the gearshift or paddles on the steering wheel. The SPORT mode also activates vehicle settings that are especially suited to sporty driving. The combustion engine and the electric motor unleash their driving torque with maximum dynamics, the accelerator’s characteristic line is programmed to react spontaneously, and the driver enjoys the full impact of the electric motor’s boost function. To ensure there is always enough energy available, the SPORT setting also affords maximum energy regeneration in the thrust and brake phases.


With the eDrive button pressed, 100 % electric driving is possible in the BMW i8, with power coming via the front axle only. The hybrid mode allows the intelligent combination of two types of drive that provide optimal traction in every situation. The electric drive is located on the front axle, while a high-performance 3-cylinder engine works at the rear axle. All four wheels can thus be powered simultaneously by two engines, and – depending on the driving situation – this utilises the advantages of front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. Outside the city, the fully-fledged all-wheel drive of the BMW i8 shows its true strength – at speeds of up to 250 km/h.