More than four years ago, BMW unveiled the i8 Spyder Concept at the Beijing Motor Show. Enthusiasts have been waiting ever since for a production version, which BMW has consistently said is coming… But the wait is about to come to an end, as Automotive News reports that BMW CEO Harald Krueger confirmed to at a recent press conference that the i8 Roadster is slated for production in 2018.
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When it finally does arrive, BMW’s hybrid droptop will likely be based on a refreshed version of the i8 platform. Expect a bit more combined power from its electric motor and gasoline engine – previous reports indicate horsepower could jump from its current 354 to well over 400 – along with a lithium ion battery pack with greater capacity.
Harald Krueger also said that orders have been “very positive” for the latest version of the BMW i3, which now boasts a battery pack capable of delivering 114 miles (approx 184 km) of range on a full charge. That’s up from 81 miles for the 2016 model-year version. We’ll have to wait and see if the next i8 got a similar 40-percent boost in electric-only range for the i8, but it definitely doesn’t seem outside the realm of possibility.