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In-depth reviews

BMW i8 Coupe - Interior & comfort (2014-2021)

The BMW i8 has a comfortable and stylish interior that’s just as striking as the exterior

Carbuyer Rating

3.3 out of 5

Owners Rating
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Interior & comfort Rating

2.5 out of 5

The dramatic styling of the BMW i8 doesn’t just extend to that handsome body styling. The interior looks just radical, but despite this the controls are well laid out and as easy to use as any other model in BMW’s range.

BMW i8 dashboard

The radical futuristic design might not be to everyone’s taste, but the BMW i8 has a dashboard with far more character than the conservatively styled Audi R8, Porsche 911 and Porsche Panamera.

The dashboard wraps around the driver almost like a fighter jet, with a very low set seating position for both driver and passenger. There are plenty of blue accents around the dashboard which are the colour of BMW’s ‘i’ electric-car brand. The climate control and main stereo panel are the same as in other BMWs, and you also get the brand’s iDrive system, which uses a rotary dial to control functions like the sat nav and stereo.

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The BMW i8 can be driven in three different modes: Eco Pro, Comfort or Sport. Both Eco Pro and Comfort soften the i8's suspension to make it extremely comfortable. Sport stiffens things up to make the car more fun to drive in corners, with less body lean than in the standard modes.

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In any mode, the seats are wonderfully comfortable and there’s a range of optional leather trims available too.

Equipment

The BMW i8 comes very well equipped – as it should really, given its six-figure asking price. Standard kit includes LED headlights, a head-up display that beams important information on the windscreen in your eyeline, heated seats, leather trim and climate control.

The i8’s stereo system features a 20GB hard drive, DAB radio, an 8.8-inch screen and BMW’s ConnectedDrive Services, which hosts a number of apps, including Facebook, and allows the owner to operate some car functions using their smartphone. From 2018, the i8 was also offered with Apple CarPlay connectivity for a one-off lifetime subscription fee.

Outside, you’ll find 20-inch alloy wheels, folding door mirrors and parking sensors.

Options

The BMW i8 comes well equipped as standard, so the options list is relatively short. There’s a range of leather trim upgrades, ranging from well priced to expensive. Other options of note include a Harman/Kardon stereo upgrade or different alloy wheel designs.

The Pure Impulse Design Package includes many of the key options as well as exterior and interior design features not available elsewhere. But at more than £12,000, it’s definitely not cheap. There's also an extensive range of 'Individual' (read: pricey) paint colours to choose from, including Twilight Purple Pearl, Solar Orange and Java Green. There's no doubting these are eye-catching, but they're expensive, won't be to everybody's taste and may affect resale values.

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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