There have been some interesting spy shots taken of the BMW Hybrid i8 – the new sports car. This will have a petrol engine capable of 393bhp as well as an electric engine. The coupe will appear at Frankfurt in September as the star of the BMW stand and is expected to be available to buy form early next year.
So what is inside the cabin? There is a triple tiered console which is very much like the current range of BMW’s. There is also a horizontal strip of buttons, volume knob and climate control display which all look to have been carried over.
There is a large screen for iDrive functions which is positioned centrally and there is a digital display for instrument controls which is new to BMW who have always had analogue dials in the past. There is a third screen above which looks rather unattractive in the picture but that is just a sat-nav system.
The dashboard will have a sweeping style based around the slim air vent, in the same way that the BMW 6-series does. BMW have described it as a ‘driver orientated cockpit’. It is expected that the gear selector may be different to the one fitted on the car pictured which is a regular BMW one. The steering wheel is very similar to the M sport one, but updated with inserts that a sharper metal and wrap around the centre boss.
The buttons on the door panels are also interesting as they are electronic releases for the doors which imply that the butterfly doors of the concept car will be kept.
It is expected that the i* will be around the £80,000 mark and will offer pace to compete with the BMW 3-series but with a 20 mile electric range and around 140mpg fuel usage.