BMW i8 Electric Sportscar Makes World Debut [w/video]

BMW i8 2

One of the most hotly anticipated arrivals at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show has finally made its way into the public spotlight; the BMW i8. The electric sportscar, four-plus-years in the making, shocked and awed the eager crowd at the center of Frankfurt festivities earlier this morning.

Following the i3 in BMW’s i sub-brand, the i8 is the hopped-up 2+2 hybrid sportscar designed with the enthusiast in mind. This “new generation sports car,” as BMW promises, comes with a twin-turbocharged 1.5-liter 3-cylinder engine at the heart of it all. Alone, it develops 231-hp, but paired to an electric motor, total output is 362 horsepower.

BMW i8

Laying claim to its sportscar credentials, the i8 can manage 62 mph (100 km/h) in only 4.4 seconds, on to a top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h). Yet, with all this power comes an impressive return of 94 mpg (2.5 l/100km), and on electric power alone, the coupe can travel at speeds up to 75 mph (120 km/h) and 310 miles (500 km).

All this technology is paired to a six-speed automated gearbox, and an advanced all-wheel drive system which utilizes the lithium-ion battery.

BMW i8 4

Inside, the high-tech interior paves the way for driver comfort via lightweight seats, leather trim all about, iDrive operating system and an advanced navigation system. No official pricing has been given, but rumor has it the i8 will fetch somewhere in the market of $136,000 when it hits BMW dealers this spring.

RELATED: See Photos of the 2013 BMW i8

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