The updated i8 is still over a year away from making its debut.BMW is preparing to make a long list of changes to the gasoline-electric i8, British media outlets are reporting.The most significant updates will be invisible to the naked eye. The updated i8 will offer about 420 horsepower -- almost 80 more than the current model -- thanks to a more powerful electric motor and a revised turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder. The extra ponies will allow the i8 to sprint from zero to 60 mph in less than 4.4 seconds, though its top speed will remain pegged at 155 mph.
When all-out speed isn't the order of the day, the i8 will be capable of driving further with the turbo three turned off thanks to a bigger battery pack. Official technical details aren't available yet, but rumors suggest the current car's 7.1kWh pack could be replaced by a 10kWh unit. An inductive charging option will allow buyers to go cordless.
Visually, BMW will give the i8 a shot of Botox to keep it looking fresh. The coupe could gain carbon fiber wheels, too, though they'll likely be offered at an extra cost. Inside, it's not too far-fetched to assume that the 7 flagship's gesture-controlled infotainment system will be offered in the i8.
British magazine Autocar believes the updated BMW i8 will land in showrooms late next year, meaning it could make its official debut during the 2017 edition of the Frankfurt Auto Show. It will share the spotlight at the show with the long-awaited i8 Spyder.
BMW i8 Protonic Red Edition pictured. Photos by Ronan Glon.