2020 BMW i8 Roadster Review | BMW’s Roadster is a pioneer in the sports car segment. How could it not? It is the first sports car to use a gasoline-electric powertrain. And that happened in 2014, several years earlier than other automakers like Porsche, Aston Martin, and many others planned to have such powertrain design.
While the Roadster lineup is a pioneer in its own way, it seems the lineup hasn’t got any update to keep up with time. Indeed. The 2020 BMW i8 Roadster, the latest iteration of the lineup, doesn’t get the updates that it really needs. What kind of a hybrid sports car the 2020 Roadster is? Read on below and you will know the answer.
Let’s start with the design first. Although we said that the Roadster is aging, we must admit that it is still among the best-looking sports cars in the market. And this thanks to its futuristic designs. You can’t just ignore the Roadster when you see it.
The current Roadster’s slim LED headlights and unique dual grilles make up the attention-grabbing front end look while the moon-shaped taillights, floating roof, and electric accents define its modern, stylish, and sleek rear end.
That’s the outside design. What about the inside? Apparently, the inside is just as alluring while providing comfort and usability at the same time. The interior is surprisingly comfortable, stylish, and practical, especially for a two-door car.
The interior is designed so that the sportscar can provide a smooth and comfortable riding experience. Of course, it is not all about the cushion. Even the noise of the running engine is minimal inside the sportscar. Also, there are optional leather seats that have cloth inserts but even the default seats are already comfortable enough.
The downside of the interior design lies in its trunk space and this applies to the coupe model as well. The trunk of the Roadster is estimated to be only 2.0 cubic feet, which is a lot fewer than Smart ForTwo’s 7.8 cubic feet, and Mazda Miata’s 4.59 cubic feet of trunk space. Then again it is a performance-based vehicle, so the lack of trunk space is certainly not an unforgivable mistake.
2020 BMW i8 Roadster Engine and Performance
Next is the engine of the 2020 BMW i8 Roadster. What kind of engine does it get powered by? The Roadster is powered by a 1.5-liter, inline-three engine that is paired with two electric motors. These electric motors get their power from a battery pack.
Compared to the previous Roadster, the latest one is slightly more powerful. First, the battery pack’s capacity is 11.6 kWh versus the previous Roadster’s 7.1 kWh. Second, the current hybrid setup is now able to deliver no less than 369 horsepower, up 12 horsepower from the previous setup.
Albeit having a powerful engine under its hood, the handling feels smooth. Even with Sport mode which improves the Roadster’s performance the handling is still smooth. That is quite a unique driving experience, especially for a sports car like this.
As for the fuel economy, the Roadster is rated by EPA to have 26 mpg for city, 29 mpg for highway, and 27 mpg for combined. In terms of efficiency, the Roadster is among the best ones. It is second only to Lexus LC 500h, which has 26 mpg for city, 35 mpg for highway, and 30 mpg for combined.
The Roadster has a safety system known as the Active Driving Assistant system. This safety system includes features such as forward-collision warning (with pedestrian detection), lane-departure warning, as well as low-speed auto front braking. Also worth mentioning is its headlights, which provides excellent visibility and clarity at night.
2020 BMW i8 Roadster Price
In terms of price, the new Roadster is quite expensive. The starting price is in the $163,300, which is costlier than many of its competitors like Audi R8 (around $138,700), Mercedes-AMG GT (around $133,500), and Porsche 911 (around $113,300).
Interestingly enough, while the starting price is high, the costs of additional features only increase it slightly. A fully loaded Roadster should cost around $172,000, which is not that far from the initial starting price.
As a hybrid sportscar, the 2020 BMW i8 Roadster is a solid option. Although it costs a lot more than many of its competitors, its quality speaks for itself. It has a sporty design, a very capable engine, and lots of amazing safety features and amenities.