Through the Tired Eyes of Faith

BMW i3 & i8 Coming Soon?

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While the overtly sporting i8 is set to act as the performance figurehead for BMW’s  initial range of purpose-built alternative-drive vehicles, it is the less  expensive and the more practical i3 that offers the choice of either standard  plug-in electric or optional range-extended electric drive. This feature will  provide BMW’s “i” brand with broad appeal at a base price that executives suggest will be  comparable to more powerful versions of today’s 1-series when sales begin in  2013.

Conceived primarily for urban driving, the compact zero-emissions hatchback  eschews the traditional low-slung lines of contemporary BMW small cars for a  distinctly more upright stance that offers the i3 excellent all-round visibility  for ease of maneuverability in city traffic, along with room for up to four  adults and a nominal 7.1 cubic feet of luggage space behind the rear seats. In  BMW’s words, “It’s been designed for maximum practicality but without any  compromise in overall driving dynamics.”

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Leading BMW’s bold  alternative-drive charge is the striking i8, an advanced all-wheel-drive  plug-in hybrid revealed here prior to its public debut at the Frankfurt motor  show in September.

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