Rumoured for the last two years, BMW will celebrate its centenary in 2016 with the i8s, a supercar based on the i8, which will compete against the AMG GT S.
Mercedes-AMG has all eyes set on Porsche, if we speak about a competitor for the new sports car AMG GT, with its top version AMG GT S. For Mercedes-AMG, 911 and its derivates are the icon to beat by the new star from Affalterbach.
But this exclusive segment will get crowded in two years from now. In the autumn of 2015, Audi will launch the second R8 generation, meanwhile BMW is preparing a hot version of the i8.
In almost all comparison tests between the BMW i8 and the Porsche 911, the conclusion was clear: the BMW i8 is a piece of art, if we speak about hybrid technology and all things around it, but cannot compete against the 911 in terms of performance.
And BMW does not want to leave things like they are now, especially for the fact that, in 2016, the Bavarians will celebrate their centenary.
And what could be the best gift to celebrate the centenary than a supercar? Under the code name M100, BMW is preparing a supercar based on the i8, which will be developed by the Project i team, led by the new programme director Roberto Fedeli, who moved from Ferrari to Munich as Georg Kacher reports in carmagazine.co.uk.
The supercar could be badged i8s and will retain the special architecture of the i8 with Life modul (carbon fibre reinforced plastic body) and Drive Modul (aluminium drive train). According to the Car magazine informations, the top version i8s will feature many original parts which could define it as a new car.
Because the i8s will deliver higher dynamic performances, we expect bigger brakes and wider tyres.
The i8s will remain a Plug-In Hybrid car, but will get much more power. The 3-cylinder from the i8 is at its maximum possibilities, so two alternatives are taken into discussion:
- A 2-litre 4-cylinder bi-turbo with around 320 HP, mated with a 204 HP electric motor
- A 3-litre 6-cylinder bi-turbo with around 480 HP (derived from the M3/M4 engine), mated with an 110 HP electric motor.
In both cases, BMW counts on an excess of 500 HP. The kerb weight of the i8 is 1,485 kg and we expect that the larger engine, the bigger brakes, the larger tyres, the new axle cinematics to add another 80-100 kg. We estimate a final kerb weight of around 1,560-1,580 kg, which is exactly the weight of the AMG GT S (1,570 kg). But the i8s performances will not suffer, because the i8s will also get an additional power of around 150 HP from 362 HP, in the case of the i8 to go over 500 HP for the i8s.
To conclude, we estimate that the i8s will come very close, in terms of dynamic performances, to the AMG GT S. The AMG GT S needs 3.8 seconds to reach 100 km/h, meanwhile the estimations for the i8s are in the same area.
An advantage for BMW could be the fuel consumption. The i8 has an official fuel consumption of only 2.1 l/100 km, very favourable for hybrid cars European cycle, meanwhile the AMG GT S needs 9.4 litres for every 100 km. The high performance car i8s will need more than 2.1 l/100 km, but will surely keep the advantages of the hybrid propulsion without being more heavy than the AMG GT S.