The BMW i8 has become something of an iconic car ever since the company showed it off as a concept back in 2009 at the Frankfurt Motor Show.
The car represents the German manufacturer’s first attempt at a pug-in hybrid supercar. The sustainably-focused sports car is part built in BMW’s wind-powered factory in Dusseldorf and has a design focus on using sustainable materials.
However, the car’s engines are produced at BMW’s Hams Hall manufacturing facility near Birmingham. The new three-cylinder engine is capable of powering the i8 from 0 to 60mph in less than 4.5 seconds, all while the vehicle delivers as much as 135mpg.
Transport minister Baroness Kramer said that the engine is a perfect demonstration of the UK’s commitment to the low-carbon transport. She said: “The British-made engine for this ground-breaking car demonstrates that the UK automotive industry is at the forefront of the production of high-quality, low emission car technology. As our recent commitment to invest £500 million in ultra-low emission vehicle design, production and adoption shows, we want the UK to be a world leader in the global transition to ultra-low emission motoring.”
Hams Hall plant director, Nick Spencer, added: “Our plant is going through a huge transformation, and we are excited to see the first of our brand-new engine assembly facilities ramping up production. The new three-cylinder petrol engines will enable the BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car to set new standards for dynamic performance in combination with industry-leading fuel efficiency and low carbon emission levels. With the exclusive supply of these engines coming from the Hams Hall plant, we are proud to be contributing to this innovative new sports car.”
Demand in the UK for the BMW i8 has caught the company by surprise with i8s sold out for more than a year.
Next Energy News recently managed to get an exclusive tour of one of only two i8s in the UK. Keep your eyes peeled for the special video feature in the coming weeks.