BMW i8 Roadster Drops Hot Laps on Nurburgring, Has Confusing "i6" Badge

BMW i8 Roadster Spied on Nurburgring 17 photos
Photo: Youtube screenshot
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Rumors about a production BMW i8 with a sliced-off roof have been floating around since 2012, when the Bavarian automaker introduced the i8 Concept Spyder. While BMW's CEO had confirmed the showroom presence since 2013, albeit with other BMW communication channels confusingly denying this, the time has come to see the BMW i8 Roadster (this should be the name of the car) testing on the Nurburgring.
A prototype of the open-top hybrid sportscar has been lapping the Nordschleife together with a fixed-roof i8 yesterday and you can see it all in the piece of footage below.

For now, we're looking at a detachable roof panel held in place by duct tape. As for how the Roadster-ization will affect the configuration of the car, the test vehicle still had its rear seats in place.

Nevertheless, with the i8 Coupe having its nose occupied by a front axle electric motor (plus cooling hardware) and its modest luggage compartment placed behind the mid-mounted 1.5-liter turbocharged engine, it looks like the 2+2 configuration will have to go - the i8 Concept Spyder, which you can see in the gallery to your right, also went down this route.

Truth be told, we did our best to fit average-sized adults in the back of the i8 during our review and the conclusion was that, just like in the case of the Porsche 911, those seats are reserved for children.

BMW continues to surround the machine with as much mystery as possible: zoom in on the rear fascia and you'll notice the prototype spied here comes with an "i6" badge.

Back in January this year, the rumor mill exploded with talks about BMW preparing an i6 crossover as part of its i range expansion plan, with the high-riding vehicle expected to land around 2020.Perhaps this is the company's way of dismissing those rumors, but its still too early to tell.

While earlier reports talked about the i8 Roadster being launched in 2018, we could see the gas-electric sportscar debuting in the second half of next year.

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About the author: Andrei Tutu
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In his quest to bring you the most impressive automotive creations, Andrei relies on learning as a superpower. There's quite a bit of room in the garage that is this aficionado's heart, so factory-condition classics and widebody contraptions with turbos poking through the hood can peacefully coexist.
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