RE: BMW launches run-out i8 ahead of production end

RE: BMW launches run-out i8 ahead of production end

Wednesday 4th September

BMW launches run-out i8 ahead of production end

'Ultimate Sophisto Edition' marks the final phase of BMW's innovative hybrid sports car



It's a sign of how rapidly changing the current automotive landscape is that just as Porsche launches its landmark Taycan EV, so BMW has begun to wind down production of its own pivotal electrified car - a model which seemed just as revolutionary on its debut just five years ago. So significant was the i8 at launch, in fact, that Chris Harris described it "the template for fast motoring for the near future" while declaring it to be "a more interesting and significant machine" than the headline-grabbing LaFerrari.

With production scheduled to end in April 2020, BMW has had to think up a fitting way to turn close the book on its forward-thinking sports car - and this is what it's come up with. As with so many run-out models these days, the 'Ultimate Sophisto Edition' is really nothing more than a lick of paint and some badges. But what a lick of paint it is. To these eyes at least the Sophisto Grey base and E-Copper accents look very smart indeed with the i8's styling striking enough not to be overwhelmed by the dark colour and 20-inch copper wheels.

Elsewhere there are clear-glass rear lights - a first for the i8 - as well as 'Shadow Line' trim, bespoke sill plates and a numbered plaque. An Accaro interior in Black/E-Copper is said to complement the exterior look and features BMW's head-up display, light package, the Harman Kardon sound system and ceramic-coated controls. Extended storage and travel packs also come equipped to the Coupe and Roadster respectively.

BMW says that 200 examples of the i8 Coupe and i8 Roadster will be available worldwide, although it hasn't clarified whether that means 200 of each, or what the potential split between the two would be if not. For those who miss out, 1,000 units of the similarly-appointed i3 Edition RoadStyle are also going on sale, as the firm's electric city car helps to see its sportier sibling off.


Search for a BMW i8 here






Author
Discussion

sidesauce

Original Poster:

1,029 posts

163 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
Having recently got one of these, I must say they have dated amazingly well all things considered. I also am learning to live with its foibles but as an attempt at a hybrid car, I have to put this up there with Audi's first R8 or the first Aston Vantage - truly a modern icon IMO. Interestingly, howmanyleft states there are 2100 of these coupe registered in the UK so it's rarer than I thought too.

Edited by sidesauce on Wednesday 4th September 20:06

cerb4.5lee

12,330 posts

125 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
I do like how individual/rare these are, but I imagine that most punters went for a Porsche 911 instead. It doesn't seem to have had a very long life cycle unless I've lost track of time.

ETA just noticed only 5 years.

gigglebug

1,238 posts

67 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
sidesauce said:
Having recently got one of these, I must say they have dated amazingly well all things considered. I also am learning to live with its foibles but as an attempt at a hybrid car, I have to put this up there with Audi's first R8 or the first Aston Vantage - truly a modern icon IMO. Interestingly, howmanyleft states there are 2100 of these coupe registered in the UK so it's rarer than I thought too.

Edited by sidesauce on Wednesday 4th September 20:06
I'd not realised before just how high the sills are, they are really noticable in the bottom image. How hard would they make it for nippers to get in and out of the back?

Really like the exterior colour scheme on this, not sure about the seats though. Have they ever done an interior with alcantara seats etc, that would be a winner for me.

Court_S

1,173 posts

122 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
I really like these and think they’ve aged fantastically. Those that actually buy them still seem to love them.

It’ll be interesting to see where BMW go with electric cars now; they did sone cool stuff with the i3 and i8 but don’t seem to have developed them and are getting left behind by others.

jjr1

2,600 posts

205 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
I sold my M4 Comp a few months back and bought an i8. I absolutely love it. A great GT car which cruises quietly and rides beautifully. I also like that it is a rare sight.

Nick928

145 posts

100 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
gigglebug said:
I'd not realised before just how high the sills are, they are really noticable in the bottom image. How hard would they make it for nippers to get in and out of the back?
I use mine with two teenage boys. 5'6" 13 year old in the back no problem with 6' 15year old in the front passenger (obv. not driving).
Might be a bit snug as a full four seater but when we leave Mrs S at home and it's just the three of us it's perfectly comfortable.
No problem getting in the back either.

jjr1

2,600 posts

205 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
Nick928 said:
I use mine with two teenage boys. 5'6" 13 year old in the back no problem with 6' 15year old in the front passenger (obv. not driving).
Might be a bit snug as a full four seater but when we leave Mrs S at home and it's just the three of us it's perfectly comfortable.
No problem getting in the back either.
Funnily your description mirrors my use to. I take my two boys out in it and leave the Mrs at home !!! Good job as I am 6'2" and no one is going to have room to sit behind me. At least my i8 is better than my Boxster in which case I have to pick a favourite kid if I go out!

eftiem64

29 posts

24 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
As a total BMW nut, I have to say the i8 has really dated and, in sales terms, obviously hasn’t succeeded, no doubt because of the bonkers price. It also doesn’t have the pace of any M car and therefore doesn’t deliver. But if I could afford one and didn’t have kids, I’d have to go for the Porsche, which does do it better. It’s an achievement but, a bit like Concorde, I wonder if BMW, Audi or Mercedes will try anything like it again, anytime soon. Somehow I doubt it.

Baked_bean

1,255 posts

137 months

Wednesday 4th September
quotequote all
I really like the i8 and this runout spec looks great.

It does seem to have had a short life cycle though and I don’t see BMW developing their electric range in the same way the competition is? Worry they are losing the plot.

cayman-black

8,073 posts

161 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Are these the new Z8 i wonder? very nice.

poo at Paul's

7,730 posts

120 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Aged well? It's only been 5 years!!! Let's phase it out as is it so wonderfully "green" !!
laughlaugh

With a bit of luck, the existing owner will contrinue to run them for the next 30 years, lets hope on the original batteries.

2002

1,694 posts

43 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Do you think it will finally have the 911 baby it's been squeezing out the back?

JackReacher

1,456 posts

160 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
I think the i3 and i8 are slightly ahead of their time. Advanced looking and construction, I suspect they will be some of the first "classic" electric cars in the future.

RicksAlfas

9,899 posts

189 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
"Ultimate Sophisto Edition" sounds like some Chinese tat on Ebay. biggrin

DonkeyApple

34,422 posts

114 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
jjr1 said:
Nick928 said:
I use mine with two teenage boys. 5'6" 13 year old in the back no problem with 6' 15year old in the front passenger (obv. not driving).
Might be a bit snug as a full four seater but when we leave Mrs S at home and it's just the three of us it's perfectly comfortable.
No problem getting in the back either.
Funnily your description mirrors my use to. I take my two boys out in it and leave the Mrs at home !!! Good job as I am 6'2" and no one is going to have room to sit behind me. At least my i8 is better than my Boxster in which case I have to pick a favourite kid if I go out!
I simply had never appreciated that these were a 2+2!

If a long legged 6.2 is driving then can children fit in the back or is it pointless like the Aston’s?

James Junior

749 posts

102 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
2002 said:
Do you think it will finally have the 911 baby it's been squeezing out the back?
Someone pointed out the whole 'giving birth to a 911' thing a few years ago and now I can't un-see it...!

Kind of spoilt the car for me. At least in black it's much less noticeable.

Ninja59

2,168 posts

57 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
It seems odd. They literally only a year ago if that released the roadster.

I am genuinely shocked that so shortly after an LCI they are canning it.

It does pose the question is this the start of a general cull of unprofitable models within BMW's line up?

There has already been noise about lack of sales of the 8 series and Z4 and they wont be replaced. So will we see it on a wider scale?

Guvernator

10,451 posts

110 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
I do like these, they still look wildly different to most other things on the road.

However, no mention whatsoever of what if anything they will replace it with. Is it me or are the big manufacturers still dragging their heels over electrification, certainly seems that way to me.

skylarking808

256 posts

31 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
Liking that a lot.

One of the few moderns that BMW have executed well and always have a futuristic feel when seen in the wild.

myhandle

896 posts

119 months

Thursday 5th September
quotequote all
RicksAlfas said:
"Ultimate Sophisto Edition" sounds like some Chinese tat on Ebay. biggrin
+1