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Key Specs
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Road Test
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Key Specs

of the 2016 BMW i8. Base trim shown.

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Supercar looks
  • Brisk acceleration
  • Efficiency versus exotic competitors
  • Interior quality
  • Ride quality
  • Multiple cameras and sonar

The Bad

  • Light but feels heavy
  • Difficult entry/exit
  • Doors complicate access
  • Tiny backseat
  • Requires premium gas
  • Modest EV range and gas mpg versus cheaper plug-ins

Notable Features of the 2016 BMW i8

  • Laser high-beam headlights newly available
  • Plug-in hybrid sports car with 15 miles of all-electric range
  • Carbon fiber-reinforced plastic body, aluminum chassis
  • Electric front-drive, gas-rear drive
  • Swing-wing doors
  • Recharges in 1.5 hours on Level 2 service

What Is the 2016 BMW i8?

The 2016 BMW i8 is a plug-in hybrid sports car that seats four. It competes against the Tesla Model S and Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid. It's offered in only one trim level with two option packages: Giga World and Tera World.

What's New on the 2016 BMW i8?

BMW Laser Light high-beam headlights are newly available in the U.S. for the 2016 model year.

How Does the 2016 BMW i8 Compare to Other Plug-In Hybrid Cars?

When comparing passenger and cargo space, the BMW i8 falls short of competitors like the Tesla Model S and Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid, both of which cost less than the i8. Neither its electric range nor its gas-only mileage are noteworthy.

What Features in the 2016 BMW i8 Are Most Important?

The 2016 BMW i8 is powered by both a 1.5-liter three-cylinder gas engine that generates 228 horsepower and a 129-hp electric motor. The gas engine is in the back and the electric motor is up front to create electric all-wheel drive. The gas engine is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission and the electric motor a two-speed transmission. Standard features include a lithium-ion battery pack, adaptive suspension system, swing-wing doors, LED headlights, 20-inch light-alloy wheels, a navigation system, head-up display, a surround view camera system and forward collision warning. As required in all new cars, the BMW i8 also features front airbags, antilock brakes and an electronic stability system.

Optional features include laser high-beam headlights and perforated leather upholstery.

Should I Buy the 2016 BMW i8?

Despite its attractive supercar looks and quality interior materials, the 2016 BMW i8 has its drawbacks. It's difficult to get in and out of the vehicle, and the backseat is quite cramped. It also requires premium fuel and doesn't deliver an impressive EV range compared with less expensive plug-in hybrid options, like the Chevrolet Volt or Toyota Prius Plug-In.

Cars.com's Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com's long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don't accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com's advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.


2016 BMW i8 Road Test

by Joe Wiesenfelder

Editor's note: This review was written in October 2015 about the 2015 BMW i8. The laser headlights mentioned are now available for 2016... Read More

Latest 2016 i8 Stories

What Drivers Are Saying

Exterior Styling
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Performance
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Interior Design
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Comfort
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Reliability
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Value For The Money
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Latest Reviews

(5.0)

Great Sports Car Hybrid

by BMW and Mercedes Owner from Ontario CA on August 5, 2016

I bought this car about 3 months ago and I have no complaints. To afford the car, I had to sell my other 2 previous cars; ( 2016 Nissan Maxima SR) ( 2016 Lexus IS350 F-Sport) So i guess you can say I ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2016 BMW i8 currently has 0 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2016 BMW i8 has not been tested.

Manufacturer Warranty

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    48 months / unlimited distance

CPO Program & Warranty

Certified Pre-Owned by BMW

Program Benefits

Comprehensive inspection by BMW technician, 24/7 Roadside Assistance, BMW Assist. Exceptional vehicles with exceptional coverage

  • Limited Warranty

    Unlimited Miles for 1-Year

    BMW Certified Pre-Owned: Covers you for unlimited miles for 1-year, after the expiration o f the 4-year / 50,000 mile New Vehicle/SAV Limited Warranty for a total of 5 years with unlimited miles. This includes up to 5 years and unlimited miles of BMW Roadside Assistance and BMW Assist (TM) on many late model BMW vehicles. Additional plans are available to extend your vehicle's coverage for up to a total of 6 years with unlimited miles. See your BMW Center for details.
  • Eligibility

    Under 5 years / 60,000 miles

    Vehicles receive a Comprehensive inspection.

    See inspection details.

Change Year or Vehicle

All Model Years for the BMW i8

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The i8 received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker