We knew it was going to happen, so we cannot say that we are surprised that BMW is making a farewell offer to the i8. In fact, the plug-in hybrid sports car was slated to reach the end of the assembly line in April, but his death was delayed by the coronavirus pandemic. The company had to press the pause button for its operations at the Leipzig plant in Germany, and now that it is operational again, the latest i8 has been assembled.
This is a roadster finished in Portimao blue, which according to our friends from BMWBLOG may just be the only i8 ever painted in a factory color. The electrified machine was built for around six years during which 20,500 cars left the assembly line, the last 18 copies benefiting from a high level of personalization for a good shipment.
Even if we can trace the roots of the design of the BMW i8 until 2009 when the Vision EfficientDynamics concept was unveiled, its avant-garde design still transmits a futuristic atmosphere more than a decade later. Although not a huge commercial success, the electrified coupe and roadster duo have been at the forefront of the company’s technological advances. From its carbon fiber passenger cell to laser headlights, the i8 was undoubtedly a technological feat.
Even if direct replacement is not planned, the hybrid know-how acquired during the life cycle of the i8 has enabled BMW to relaunch its electrification projects to a higher level. The company aims to have at least 25 electrified models on sale by the middle of the decade, with a minimum of 12 avoiding the combustion engine in total. The first order of business is to launch the iX3 as a zero emission X3, the iNext slated for 2021 as the crown jewel in BMW’s EV portfolio.
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