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Welcome to this comprehensive article where we delve into the intriguing story behind the discontinuation of the BMW i8. The BMW i8, a revolutionary plug-in hybrid sports car, captured the hearts of automotive enthusiasts worldwide with its futuristic design and impressive performance. However, despite its popularity, BMW made the difficult decision to discontinue the i8, leaving many wondering why such an iconic vehicle was taken off the market. In this article, we will explore the reasons behind the discontinuation of the BMW i8 and the factors that influenced this decision.

Why BMW i8 Discontinued: A Brief Overview

Before we dive deeper into the reasons for the discontinuation of the BMW i8, let’s first understand what made this car so special. The i8 was unveiled as a concept car in 2009 and later made its production debut in 2014. With its striking butterfly doors, sleek aerodynamic design, and innovative hybrid powertrain, the i8 was truly a game-changer in the automotive industry. Its futuristic appeal combined with its exceptional fuel efficiency and electrified performance made it a symbol of BMW’s commitment to sustainability and innovation.

The Shift Towards Electric Vehicles

One of the primary reasons behind the discontinuation of the BMW i8 was the shifting focus of the automotive industry towards fully electric vehicles (EVs). As governments worldwide introduced stricter emission regulations and encouraged the adoption of electric mobility, BMW, like many other automakers, realized the need to prioritize the development of EVs over hybrid vehicles. With the introduction of the BMW i3 and the upcoming i4 and iX models, BMW aimed to consolidate its efforts and resources in the electric vehicle segment.

Evolving Customer Preferences

Another crucial factor that influenced the discontinuation of the BMW i8 was the changing preferences of customers in the sports car segment. While the i8 garnered significant attention and praise for its unique design and groundbreaking technology, it faced stiff competition from other high-performance sports cars in terms of pure performance. Enthusiasts who sought blistering acceleration and track-focused dynamics often opted for gasoline-powered sports cars that offered a more visceral driving experience. Consequently, BMW recognized the need to cater to the evolving demands of its target audience and develop vehicles that better aligned with their expectations.

Market Demand and Sales Performance

Despite its initial success and cult following, the BMW i8 faced challenges in terms of sales performance. While it enjoyed strong demand during the early years of its production, the enthusiasm gradually waned over time. The relatively high price point, limited practicality, and the emergence of newer electric and hybrid offerings from other manufacturers posed challenges for the i8. As a result, BMW had to make a strategic decision to discontinue the i8 and allocate its resources to more promising models and technologies.

Advancements in Battery Technology

The evolution of battery technology played a significant role in the discontinuation of the BMW i8. When the i8 was first conceived, the state-of-the-art battery technology available limited its all-electric range and overall performance. As time passed, advancements in battery chemistry and energy density allowed for the development of more capable electric powertrains. BMW recognized the potential of these advancements and decided to invest in all-electric vehicles that could offer superior range and performance, thus contributing to the discontinuation of the i8.

Rapid Technological Advancements

In the ever-evolving automotive landscape, technological advancements occur at an unprecedented pace. The BMW i8, while ahead of its time when it was first introduced, eventually faced the challenge of keeping up with the rapid advancements in automotive technology. The development of more advanced driver-assistance systems, autonomous driving capabilities, and connected features demanded significant research and development efforts. By discontinuing the i8, BMW could focus its resources on integrating these technological advancements into its future electric models.

The Influence of Production Costs

Manufacturing a hybrid sports car like the BMW i8 involves complex engineering and assembly processes, resulting in relatively high production costs. Despite the i8’s appeal, the cost of production limited its accessibility to a broader market. As BMW sought to make electric mobility more affordable and accessible to a wider audience, the production costs associated with the i8 became increasingly unsustainable. Discontinuing the i8 allowed BMW to explore more cost-effective manufacturing techniques and invest in vehicles that could be produced at a larger scale, driving down overall costs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Why did BMW discontinue the i8?

  • BMW discontinued the i8 due to several reasons, including the shift towards electric vehicles, evolving customer preferences, market demand and sales performance, advancements in battery technology, rapid technological advancements, and the influence of production costs. These factors collectively influenced BMW’s decision to discontinue the i8 and prioritize the development of fully electric vehicles.

2. Will there be a successor to the BMW i8?

  • While there is no direct successor to the i8, BMW has introduced a range of all-electric vehicles such as the i3, i4, and iX, which embody the brand’s vision for sustainable mobility. These new models combine cutting-edge technology, impressive performance, and the iconic BMW design language, offering an enhanced electric driving experience.

3. How successful was the BMW i8 in terms of sales?

  • The BMW i8 enjoyed initial success and received critical acclaim for its innovative design and hybrid powertrain. However, over time, sales performance faced challenges, primarily due to the emergence of newer electric and hybrid offerings from competitors and evolving customer preferences. Despite these challenges, the i8 remains a significant milestone in BMW’s journey towards sustainable mobility.

4. Can I still buy a BMW i8?

  • While the i8 has been discontinued, it is still possible to find new and used models in the market. However, availability may vary depending on your location. It is recommended to check with BMW dealerships or reputable online platforms specializing in luxury and exotic vehicles to explore the availability of the i8.

5. What makes the BMW i8 unique compared to other sports cars?

  • The BMW i8 stands out among other sports cars due to its unique plug-in hybrid powertrain. It seamlessly combines a combustion engine with an electric motor, offering impressive acceleration and efficiency. Additionally, the i8’s futuristic design, featuring butterfly doors and sleek aerodynamics, sets it apart from traditional sports cars, giving it a distinctive and unmistakable presence on the road.

6. Will BMW continue its focus on electric mobility?

  • Absolutely! BMW has demonstrated a firm commitment to electric mobility and sustainable transportation. The discontinuation of the i8 is part of a broader strategy to concentrate on fully electric vehicles. BMW has introduced and will continue to develop innovative electric models, ensuring a seamless transition towards a future dominated by electric mobility.


In conclusion, the discontinuation of the BMW i8 was influenced by various factors, including the shifting focus towards electric vehicles, evolving customer preferences, market demand and sales performance, advancements in battery technology, rapid technological advancements, and the influence of production costs. As BMW positions itself at the forefront of electric mobility, the legacy of the i8 lives on, reminding us of the brand’s commitment to innovation and sustainability. Although the i8 is no longer in production, its impact on the automotive industry and its status as an iconic hybrid sports car will forever be remembered.