LOS ANGELES – German automobile manufacturer BMW unveiled on Wednesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show the 2019 BMW i8 Roadster, the first convertible two-seater version of the i8 hybrid sports car, which can travel almost 30 kilometers on electricity alone.
The i8 Roadster uses a 1.5-liter, three-cylinder turbocharged engine which produces 228 horsepower for the rear wheels and a 141-horsepower electric engine for the front wheels.
Overall, the hybrid engine plant generates 369 horsepower.
The hybrid technology allows the i8 Roadster to accelerate from 0 to 96 kilometers per hour in 4.4 seconds and its maximum speed, electronically limited, is 249 km/h (155 mph).
BMW revealed Wednesday in Los Angeles that the sales of the i8 Roadster will begin in spring 2018, at the same time as the BMW i8 Coupe.
The manufacturer said the combustion engine only starts running when the car accelerates quickly and is turned off by the management system as soon as possible so that the i8 Roadster uses only electric power.
The i8 Roadster comes with an electrically operated soft-top roof which opens or closes in less than 16 seconds while the vehicle is in motion, up to a maximum speed of about 50 km/h.
Among other highlights presented at the AutoMobility LA show was the new Nissan Leaf, the electric campervan Volkswagen Concept I.D. Buzz and the 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 convertible.