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The BMW i8 Roadster First Edition debuts at NAIAS.

Live photos and details.

In 2018, NAIAS in Detroit gives you the chance to discover trailblazing open-top driving pleasure at its most exclusive form. Here’s the BMW i8 Roadster First Edition.

The BMW i8 Roadster at NAIAS, Detroit

The allure of sustainable driving pleasure by BMW i just got even stronger. The new BMW i8 Roadster takes the i8’s combination of locally emission-free mobility and high-calibre performance and sprinkles the drop-top driving experience into the mix.

The i8 Roadster is powered by a drive duo in the form of a hybrid synchronous electric motor and a three-cylinder petrol engine. The engine’s power is channelled to the rear wheels through a six-speed Steptronic transmission, while the electric motor propels the front wheels via a two-speed automatic gearbox. The end result is a hybrid-specific all-wheel-drive system that glues the car to the road.
The electric motor’s peak output is 105 kW/143 hp, while the turbocharged three-cylinder extracts a maximum output of 170 kW/231 hp from its 1,5 litre displacement, plus peak torque of 320 Nm.
The system output produced by the electric motor and engine acting in unison is 275 kW/374 hp.
The BMW i8 Roadster accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds.

The pure electric range of the i8 Roadster covers up to 53 kilometres (33 miles) with zero local emissions, while you can reach speeds of up to 120 km/h purely on the electric motor’s power.

The BMW i8 Roadster at NAIAS, Detroit

Passengers inside the new BMW i8 Roadster will look up to find either the open sky or a all-season fabric soft-top, which opens or closes in an almost silent hush, within 15 seconds. The BMW i8 Roadster is alone among its rivals in offering owners a fabric soft-top.

The BMW i8 is the world’s first sports car to be developed from the outset primarily under the banner of sustainability. And so, intelligent lightweight design and innovative production technology also play a key role in the construction of the soft-top. For example, aluminium elements connecting the roof mechanism with the body of the new BMW i8 Roadster are produced in a new 3D printing process. This manufacturing method for aluminium components breaks new ground in the automotive industry.

The BMW i8 Roadster at NAIAS, Detroit

The design cues common to both the new BMW i8 Coupe and new BMW i8 Roadster include the gullwing doors that open forwards and upwards as well as optimised aerodynamics.

BMW i8 Roadster First Edition

The BMW i8 Roadster First Edition is limited to a production run of 200 units. The special-edition cars will be among the first examples of the open-top plug-in hybrid sports car built and delivered to customers around the world.

All of the body paint finishes and interior designs offered for the new BMW i8 Roadster are available for the special edition. These include the color, the BMW i8 Roadster is shown at the NAIAS – called E-Copper metallic. It is combined with accents in Frozen Grey metallic. The paint finish has been added to the choice of exterior paint finishes available for the new BMW i8 Coupe and new BMW i8 Roadster.

What makes the First Edition stand out is some small details and a wide range of standard equipment.

Inside the BMW i8 Roadster First Edition, a plate bearing the message “1 of 200” points to the car’s exclusive status. And the special edition also comes with a signed booklet – likewise limited to 200 copies – documenting the development of the new BMW i8 Roadster.

Standard specification for the new BMW i8 Roadster First Edition includes exclusive, 20-inch, radial-spoke light-alloy wheels in Jet Black matt which also feature blue detailing and a BMW i logo. Matt black is also used for the inlay in the special edition’s tailgate and the trim element on its C-pillars bearing the prominent and classy “Roadster” badging.
Also, the Carpo interior design package is included as standard, comprises full leather trim, which is available for the new BMW i8 Roadster exclusively in the colour combination Ivory White/Black.

Also, the extensive standard equipment of the new BMW i8 Roadster includes the Navigation system Professional, BMW Display Key, Driving Assistant with Surround View, a sports leather steering wheel with multifunction buttons and shift paddles, electrically adjustable and heated seats with memory function and a multifunctional instrument display.
And the BMW i8 Roadster First Edition raises the stakes with a host of additional sophisticated and progressive options. Indeed, the special edition is fitted with non-dazzling BMW Laserlight headlights, and its control and display system offers the extra benefits of the BMW Head-Up Display.

Plus, the new BMW i8 Roadster First Edition is equipped with the travel package. In addition to the contents of the storage package, this includes a map case in Nappa leather and Alcantara partition elements for the storage compartment behind the seats, which offers approximately 100 litres of additional stowage space.

Published: 16. January 2018

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About the author

Thomas Gigold has been writing about cars for more than ten years. He loves long road trips, is father of three and lives in Germany. Thomas is the Editor-in-chief at the MOTOR SHOW BLOG. Learn more.

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