2018 BMW i8 roadster confirmed by CEO

The BMW i8 roadster has been confirmed by BMW's CEO, Harald Krueger, and will join the company's global lineup in 2018.
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According to Automotive News Europe, Krueger reportedly announced the timing of the i8 convertible at a press conference held in Santa Monica, California early last week.

At this year's CES, Krueger confirmed that the i8 roadster had been given the green light for production. The CEO has provided no further details about the upcoming convertible.

Autocar reported in May that the 2018 i8, along with the now confirmed roadster, will gain a more powerful drivetrain. The two-door's 1.5-litre three-cylinder engine will be updated, and will be paired with a more powerful electric motor.

BMW i8 Spyder static rear

At present, the plug-in hybrid drivetrain produces a total of 266kW of power and 570Nm of torque. That's said to jump to at least 310kW with the 2018 refresh. Consequently, the car's 0-100km/h time of 4.4 seconds should fall too.

To go along with this, the car will reportedly gain a new battery pack with a rating of at least 10kWh, up from today's 7.1kWh unit. That should result in an improved electric-only driving range.

Other changes are said to include a new lowered suspension setup, lightweight alloy wheels, and the availability of inductive charging.

BMW i8 Spyder engine detail

BMW has already telegraphed the look of the i8 roadster with the 2012 i8 Spyder (pictured here) and the 2016 i Vision Future Interaction concept cars, although the production version should feature revised front- and rear-end designs.