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BMW Reportedly Considering a More Powerful i8

Sports car could use a different engine

BMW could offer a more potent version of its i8 supercar, according to a report from Auto Express.

Alexander Kotouc, head of product management for BMW i, said customers have been asking for this type of vehicle. “I can tell you at this point we are still evaluating it; the i8 is the iconic sports car of the new era,” he said.

The automaker updated the plug-in hybrid sports car for the 2019 model year. With its 1.5-liter turbocharged inline-three engine and electric motor setup, the model achieves a total output of 369 hp and 420 lb-ft of torque. BMW estimates the coupe can reach 60 mph in 4.2 seconds, while the roadster can hit that mark in 4.4 seconds.

Koutouc said that BMW could make adjustments to the i8’s powertrain to squeeze out more power. But it could also put in a different engine if necessary, he said.

“There is a customer need and desire to have more power and we will try to fulfill it while also keeping our DNA authentic,” said Koutouc. Essentially, the powertrain must fit in with the BMW i brand.

“You could put a V-12 in there and it would be incredibly powerful but would it still be a BMW i car? We need to find the perfect balance.”

The report sheds a different light on the i8, considering we just heard that BMW may not make a new i8 at the end of the current generation. Speaking with Autocar, BMW i boss Robert Irlinger said the company is still deciding about the i8.

The subbrand’s design chief, Domagoj Dukec, compared the i8 to the short-lived M1 supercar, saying, “The i8 could be the M1–it doesn’t have to always be a name at BMW. We always give an answer to what people and customers are requiring at that moment in time.”