BMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing Car Abandons Plug-In Drivetrain For V8 Power

BMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing Car 7 photos
Photo: Hamofa Motor Sport
BMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing CarBMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing CarBMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing CarBMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing CarBMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing CarBMW i8 GTR Silhouette Racing Car
When BMW came out with the i8 supercar, the automaker made a case for performance and eco-friendliness. But what if you take eco out of the picture and shoehorn a 4.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 in the engine bay where you’d normally find a 1.5-liter turbo three-cylinder? Enter Hamofa Motor Sport and the i8 GTR.
The Belgian company, along with the French at Solution F, developed the car to race in the Belcar series. Belgium's national GT racing series includes historic circuits such as Zolder and Spa, so look forward to lots of on-track action from the i8 GTR.

Built around a tube-frame chassis, the silhouette racing car uses the S65 V8 from the E92 M3 with added attitude. In fact, this particular version of the engine has more in common with the Z4 GT3 than the previous generation of the M3.

Weighing in at 1,100 kilograms (2,425 pounds) and rated in the ballpark of 535 horsepower (528 horsepower), the racecar feeds air into the eight-cylinder powerplant through a roof-mounted scoop. The tubular headers of the exhaust system add to the visual drama and performance, and all in all, Hamofa can be proud of the i8 GTR.

Hamofa Motor Sport plans to swap the engine with a V8 with 610 PS (602 horsepower) or thereabouts sourced from America, which benefits from the know-how of Hamofa Industrial Engines. As unusual as it may sound, HIE is specialized in industrial diesel engines.

The company responsible for the purpose-built i8 GTR continues to fine-tune the silhouette racing car, collecting data and preparing for the 24 Hours of Zolder. It is at the 24-hour race that Hamofa plans to run the 610-horsepower V8, and that’s a huge bet considering that the team doesn’t know how handling and reliability will be affected by the new high-octane heart.

On a related note, the i8 facelift starts at $147,500 in the United States, with the Roadster coming in at $163,300.

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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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