BMW i8 Review

Gumtree Rating

4.5 rating

The groundbreaking i8 first sped onto the market in 2014. In 2018, the Roadster variant appeared on the tarmac, accompanied by an added boost in bhp. Powered by a hybrid-electric engine, it can travel up to 32 miles on battery power alone – not bad for a high-performance motor. The butterfly doors and sleek lines add to the futuristic feel BMW has gone for with this model. Plus, the aerodynamic body is designed to reduce drag, increase speed and boost efficiency. Surprisingly economical, yet playful once you’re behind the wheel, this is a futuristic vehicle for car lovers to enjoy.

Visit the BMW hub to learn more about the i8.

What we think about the BMW i8

The i8’s unorthodox powertrain is as brave as its styling, delivering a car lover’s ideal balance of eccentric and thrilling.



Surprisingly economical


Futuristic exterior design


Powerful and dynamic drivetrain


Poor front visibility

Little emphasis on practicality

Suspension feels a bit firm

The 2020 iteration of the i8 has a dual-acting powertrain with a mid-mounted 231 bhp petrol engine. A six-speed automatic gearbox drives the rear wheels, while a fairly large 143 bhp electric motor powers the front wheels – with three different drive modes to choose from.

Driving performance of the Bmw I8

Our Driving Rating8 / 10

This i8 has a clever AWD (all-wheel-drive) system that sees much of its power sent rearwards when entering a corner. This drive is then dragged back out with an abundance of grip – a fun challenge for sports car enthusiasts. Low drag and minimal rolling resistance complement its lightweight design, adding to the thrill. BMW has reduced the front understeer in the latest model by using new front damper calibration and a stouter rear anti-roll bar. All of this while gliding silently along the road, thanks to its all-weather sealed cloth roof.

Safety and reliability of the Bmw I8

Our Safety Rating7 / 10

Despite no recent rating from Euro NCAP, the carbon fibre body and aluminium chassis suggest a high level of safety. The carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic construction allows for large door openings without compromising strength. Tests show that after a front impact at 40 mph, the passenger cell remains intact. Rounding out the safety features, the i8 comes with six airbags as standard. It can also be fitted with a Driver Assistance package, which includes an automatic braking system

Under the bonnet of the Bmw I8

Our Engine Rating9 / 10

BMW delivers an amazing performance with the 1.5-litre three-cylinder engine. In sports mode, the engine stays running continuously. When you don’t need all of its power for acceleration, the car then uses its front motor to push back and generate electricity in the battery. The 374 bhp engine eclipses 0-62mph in 4.4 seconds, with a top speed of 155 mph. All of this acceleration is thanks to the 6,500 rpm of torque it produces, which is well-managed by its grippy front tyres and AWD.

What you'll find in the Bmw I8

Our Design Rating9 / 10

The exterior of the i8 looks as though it wasn’t designed by the human eye. Acute angles, jagged edges and butterfly doors give it dynamic futurism that you rarely see in a BMW. Powerful acceleration is helped by its aerodynamic design, reducing wind drag and improving the car’s handling in general. The convertible roof may concern those looking for a quieter ride, but rest assured, the all-weather proofing means you’ll glide silently along the road. The i8 is both deceptively wide and long, and keep in mind that those doors need plenty of room to open.

Comfort and interiors in the Bmw I8

Our Comfort Rating8 / 10

It might be a sports car but, thanks to a pair of rear seats, the i8 is more practical than you might expect. However, taller passengers will still find the back a tight squeeze. If you’re planning on keeping the fun of the i8 for yourself, then the rear seats will serve as useful extra cargo space, given that the boot isn’t its strongest attribute. There are 154 litres of luggage space – but this car is less about family vacations and more about the adventure of getting behind the wheel.

BMW i8 front interior dashboard

What features you'll find in the Bmw I8

Our Features Rating9 / 10

BMW included the latest cutting-edge technology in the i8, complemented by a high level of attention to detail and a luxurious interior. The 20-inch alloy wheels add style, while its seats are electrically adjustable, heated and covered in luxurious leather. The sat nav is run through the infotainment system, as is the range of BMW apps available to connect to your smartphone. Bluetooth and a 20GB hard drive also feature inside. Parking sensors are included, as is a 360-degree camera that gives you a greater perspective of the car’s exterior.

What fuel efficiency to expect from the Bmw I8

Our Fuel Consumption Rating8 / 10

The BMW i8 is capable of achieving 128.4 mpg though, in reality, you’d need to run solely on electric power to get consistently close to that figure. That said, the battery can run for up to 32 miles at a speed of 75 mph, so it’s unlikely you’ll be restricting yourself, given how much fun it is to drive. Fortunately, the i8 emits a mere 42 g/km of CO2, which puts you in a lower tax band than most city cars.

Running costs of the Bmw I8

Our Cost Rating8 / 10

If you buy the i8, a government subsidy means you’ll get some cash back. In addition to its excellent fuel economy, BMW also includes a three-year warranty or a servicing every 36,000 miles in its hefty price. But the i8 offers even more benefits-in-kind – for someone in the 40% tax bracket, driving this car is going to cost roughly half the amount of most other sports cars in its class in terms of taxes. Given BMW’s reputation for looking after their customers should anything go wrong, you’ll be in safe hands.

Our verdict of the Bmw I8

4.5 rating

4.5 / 5 Gumtree rating

The i8 is a futuristic supercar that's staggeringly eco-friendly and thrilling to drive. It's built by car lovers and designed for them too, so enjoy the ride.