Able to dash from 0 to 60 MPH in 4.5 seconds, nobody could call the BMW i8 a slow car with a straight face. But to celebrate its 100th birthday, BMW is reportedly planning a faster and more robust version of the i8 called the i9, with a bigger engine and battery to boost horsepower.
Between the 1.5 liter three-cylinder engine and the electric motor, the i8 makes 357 horsepower and 420 ft-lbs of torque in a chassis with perfect 50/50 weight distribution and a curb weight of under 3,300 pounds. That’s a great starting point for a new hybrid supercar that could see the three-cylinder engine replaced by something bigger and with more guts. A larger electric motor might be on tap soon, though the report in Auto Motor und Sport says that BMW is definitely sticking with the plug-in hybrid setup.
The bigger battery could also mean a longer all-electric driving range, with the i8 currently rated at about 23 miles before the gas-powered range extender kicks in. With Tesla and BMW reportedly in talks about sharing technology, maybe the i9 could be the first BMW to first Supercharger technology as well.
Then again, if it really is being imagined as a centennial celebratory car, BMW might want to go it alone on this one. Whatever it takes to get an even faster version of our favorite hybrid supercar on the road is alright by me.