BMW Considering Hybrid M1 to Replace i8, Will Have Around 700 HP

Remember when BMW was rumored to make a mid-engined sports car but came out with the i8 instead of the M1 we actually wanted? Yeah, the M1 rumors are back, and this time, we're a little more hopeful.
BMW Considering Hybrid M1 to Replace i8, Will Have Around 700 HP 1 photo
Photo: BMW
As you may have heard, the i3 and i8 are not selling that well, and their relative lack of desirability is also keeping resale values down. So BMW may have realized the error of its 1.5-liter ways and is now looking to use hybrid technology to take on supercar makers like McLaren and Lamborghini.

While never specifically called an M1, the car described by a recent Autocar report is very much a successor to the legendary mid-engined M, as well as an indirect replacement for the i8.

Speaking on the matter, BMW board member responsible for product development, Klaus Frohlich, told the British publication talked about combining a carbon fiber platform like that of the i8 with a powerful M-specific motor and compact, powerful electric motors.

“If you are an engineer, once in your life, you want to make a super-sports car. If we have these very compact and very powerful electric driving units, if we have a carbon fiber chassis – for example, the i8’s – and if we still have high-performance engines, then, if you do it cleverly, you can combine them into a real performance package," Frohlich told Autocar.

While the electric motors they use currently make around 100 horsepower, they will have around 200 HP and 378 lb-ft (513 Nm... how specific). The hybridized M car, which is supposed to arrive around 2023, is expected to deliver around 700 horsepower, which hints at a V8, though the twin-turbo 3-liter setup can't be ruled out either.

Of course, the super-sports car will also be a lot more expensive than the i8. But there's plenty of room in the market left for a desirable BMW flagship, considering what McLaren charges for a 570S.

Ever BMW model launched from 2021 onward will have the capacity for some sort of electrification, and that should eventually include the M's. These compact e-motors will have the benefit of instant torque. But the company official says fully-electric M cars aren't viable because they simply wouldn't handle and corner as they should.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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