Spy photographers have revealed the cabin of BMW’s new hybrid sports car, the i8. The 393bhp petrol-electric coupe will be the star of BMW’s Frankfurt motor show stand in September 2013, with the first sales following in early 2014.
BMW i8: inside the flagship BMW’s cabin
The triple-tiered centre console looks very similar to the current BMW range: the climate control display is a carryover item, likewise the horizontal strip of buttons and volume knob.
While a large central screen for iDrive functions is no surprise, the digital instrument display is a new direction for BMW, which has stuck resolutely to analogue dials while rivals including Jaguar have opted for an adaptive LCD interface. Ignore the ugly smaller third screen atop the dashboard: it’s just a third-party sat-nav unit.
Like the BMW 6-series, the i8’s dashboard will adopt sweeping lines around a single slim air vent, accentuating what BMW describes as a ‘driver-orientated cockpit’. The gear selector on this test mule is a regular BMW stick, but it’s possible the production i8 could still be fitted with its own version. The steering wheel is a subtly updated version of the standard M Sport wheel, with sharper metal inserts wrapping around the downsized centre boss.
Also worth a look are the buttons on the door panels – they’re electronic releases for opening the doors, confirming the production BMW i8 will keep the concept car’s butterfly doors.
The i8 will cost around £80,000 and offer BMW M3-rivalling pace with a 20-mile electric power range and an official fuel figure of around 104mpg.
>> For CAR’s full tech-spec scoop on the BMW i8 supercar, click here. And to read our first ride story in the BMW i3 – Munich’s game-changing supermini – click here.