BMW continues to announce electric and hybrid-electric vehicles. The i3 recently got a bigger battery, the 5 and 7 series are gaining plug-in models, and now BMW has officially confirmed another pair. The i8 hybrid supercar will be getting a roadster model for 2018, and there is a plug-in Mini just around the corner.
The i8 roadster was first seen at the 2012 Beijing auto show but has seen delays and schedule push-backs since. Now BMW Chairman Harald Kreuger has confirmed in Santa Monica last week that the drop top will see production next year. That's scheduled to correspond with the facelift of the i8 coupe and a rumoured bump from the current 362 hp to well over 400 via a new electric motor.
Meanwhile, in Munich, Mini has revealed their first plug-in hybrid model. It's not quite finished development, but should be just around the corner.
Head of MINI brand management Sebastian Mackensen says that the new model should still drive like a Mini, and "impress everyone who already has hybrid driving experience with MINI’s unique go-kart driving feel.” Mini also claims that the hybrid is focused not just on efficiency, but is "uncompromising in pursuit of driving fun".
The automaker hasn't given a battery size, power figure or range yet, but has stated that the hybrid Mini has modes that will allow speeds of up to 125 km/h on electric power alone. They have also hinted that acceleration will be quicker than gas-only models.