The new BMW i8 is already an astonishingly fast car. Thanks to AWD and two power units - a 1.5-litre, three-cylinder engine drives the rear wheels while an electric motor does the donkey work up front - the hybrid sports car produces a total of 357bhp and 420lb ft torque. These figures endow the 1560kg i8 with a 0-62mph time of 4.4 seconds and a top speed limited to 155mph.
For some petrolheads, this combination of power, technology and turn of speed represents automotive perfection. For others, however, BMW’s decision to equip the i8 with a three-cylinder Mini engine - and indeed an electric motor - is sacrilege; many comments under our BMW i8 YouTube video are calling for the return of the mighty E60 M5 V10 engine, for example.
While the use of a V10 is in no way plausible - it’s too heavy, too big and too agricultural - our renderings show what an i8 could look like if the ‘M’ division was given free rein.
As you can see from the images above, the results would be incredible. Flared arches, deep cooling ducts in the front bumper and quad exhaust pipes (meaning it would have more pipes than cylinders) in the redesigned rear bumper suit the i8 very well, even helping to distract the eye from the 911 phenomenon - if you haven’t seen this before, the i8’s rear-end seems to have swallowed a Porsche whole.
The ride height of our rendered Mi8 is also lower than standard, which gives the car a more imposing, squat look. In terms of power, the three-cylinder Mini engine already produces 228bhp, so we’d like to see a tuned version of BMW’s TwinPower turbocharged 242bhp 1997cc four-cylinder engine that you’ll find in the 328i.
What are your thoughts on a potential Mi8 hybrid sportscar?