2020 BMW i8 Convertible

MSRP range: $163,300
Edmunds suggests you pay$136,109

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2020 BMW i8 Review

  • Excellent integration of powertrain and in-car technology
  • Head-turning futuristic design
  • Unique powertrain and limited production guarantee exclusivity
  • Performance-wise, it lags competitors
  • Difficult to get in and out of
  • Few available advanced driving aids
  • Powertrain is a little unrefined for the price
  • No significant changes for 2020
  • Part of the first i8 generation introduced for 2014

The 2020 BMW i8 seemingly has all of the prerequisites for supercar status. It has funky flip-up doors that are hard to operate. It's made from carbon fiber. Inside, you'll find high-end materials everywhere, with an options list that includes materials such as ivory white perforated leather. Heck, you can even get the i8 with lasers for headlights. But there's one aspect that's very different from most of the supercars on sale today: The i8 is a hybrid.

Rather than using a supercharged V8 or a sonorous V12, the BMW i8 is powered by a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine, paired with an electric motor and an 11.6-kWh battery, all hooked up to all-wheel drive. That's right, the i8 is a plug-in hybrid. It puts out 369 horsepower with that hybrid powertrain, which makes it relatively quick, and it has an EPA-estimated 18 miles of all-electric range.

EdmundsEdmunds' Expert Rating
Rated for you by America’s best test team
The BMW i8 is a unique and deeply interesting car on many levels. From its construction to its powertrain and even the ease at which you can explore its considerable limits, the i8 can be a very satisfying drive. But when not charging around, or charging up at home, the i8 can feel clumsy. Driving in slow-moving traffic highlights most of the i8's deficiencies.
The BMW i8 has exotic styling and the performance to back it up ... mostly. Acceleration is quick as long as you've got the car placed in Sport mode. In our testing, the i8 sprinted from 0 to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds. In the other driving modes, it becomes more ordinary. It's also worth mentioning that a lot of other performance cars these days are quicker still.

The i8 can seem clumsy in city traffic because of its grabby brakes and noticeable transition from electric to gasoline engine power. It's just not a particularly smooth car to drive. Out on the open road, the i8 is more fun to drive. The car's handling limits are easily approachable, even if they are a bit modest.
From the outside, the i8's sleek styling might make you think it's a car that will take quite the commitment to put up with. The seats, too, look uncomfortable. But looks can be deceiving since the i8 offers comfortable seating (for two, anyway) and, at least as performance cars go, a reasonably compliant and smooth ride quality.

There's not much wind noise, but the road noise more than makes up for it. It's constant, especially on the highway. To drown it out, you'll have to crank up the sound system. We do like the climate control system. The A/C is strong, and there are plenty of air vents.
The simplicity of the i8's interior can, at first, be underappreciated. BMW has kept the controls basic, and anyone who has spent any time in a BMW over the past 10 years will immediately be comfortable interacting with the i8. The interior is not as space-age as the exterior, but that's just fine by us. You can just concentrate on the fun part: driving. The driving position is excellent and caters to a variety of body types. Forward visibility is excellent.

Getting in and out is something you'll either look forward to or dread. The upward-opening doors are easy to open and close. But getting in requires a bit of a slide down, and climbing out can't really be done gracefully. But if you just think the doors look cool, it's probably worth the effort.
The i8's older iDrive system might not offer the flash of a newer competitor's interface, but it certainly gets the job done. Navigation is quick to use and easy to read on the road, and the audio system does a good job of getting loud while maintaining clarity and balance.

The i8 falls short on other fronts, especially in this price range. Android Auto isn't supported, and even Apple CarPlay requires a subscription after a free one-year trial. The i8 is also lacking in some now nearly ubiquitous driver aids such as adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and high-speed emergency braking. You do get forward collision warning and low-speed emergency braking. Thankfully, both of those systems are not overly sensitive.
No one's going to accuse the i8 of being overly practical, but it can function as a daily driver thanks to its efficient use of cargo space. Three grocery bags can fit in its 4.7 cubic feet of trunk space. That's less than what you get from an Audi R8 or Mercedes AMG GT but more than the Acura NSX.

The i8 benefits from having back seats no matter how impractical they might be. They do double duty as an interior storage shelf for larger items such as backpacks and jackets. There's even a bit of storage in the center console — just don't expect it to hold more than a phone, charging cables and some sunglasses.
The BMW i8 has some decent green-car credentials, with an EPA-estimated 18 miles of all-electric range and then 27 mpg in combined city/highway driving once the battery is depleted. Our test car lived up to those estimates with most tanks of fuel returning north of 27 mpg. And even after 15-mile stints at highway speeds, it still had another 5 miles or so of full electric range.

Like any plug-in hybrid, how and where you drive, and how often you plug in to recharge, can greatly affect efficiency. As for recharging the hybrid battery, it takes about three hours using a Level 2 charger. Using a standard 120-volt household outlet will take about eight hours.
Probably the most controversial piece of the i8 might be the price. Starting at nearly $150,000, the i8 is in the same price range as the Acura NSX, Audi R8 and Mercedes-AMG GT Coupe. All have oodles more speed and performance. But comparing them dollar for dollar would almost miss the point of the i8.

The i8's interior materials aren't anything special, but the actual quality of construction is excellent. The exposed carbon-fiber tub is visible everywhere and just looks so cool. What you see is not done for effect, and BMW had every right to show it off.
It's quite easy to say "wow, cool!" when checking out the BMW i8. From the styling details to the upward-opening doors to the readily visible carbon-fiber tub, the i8 is chock full of uniqueness. All of that coolness is amplified once you get behind the wheel thanks in no small part to how comfortable and easy to use everything is. It's a future classic for sure.

Which i8 does Edmunds recommend?

Since the i8 is only available in a single trim level, your choices are limited. You can go with the coupe or convertible depending on your taste, and there are several interior packages and a few choices for wheels to choose from — otherwise, most of the selection is done for you.

BMW i8 models

The 2020 BMW i8 is available in a single trim level offered as either a coupe or a soft-top convertible. The i8 Coupe features 2+2 seating, while the i8 Roadster subs out the seats in exchange for the roof mechanism. Both models use the same plug-in hybrid powertrain that produces a combined 369 horsepower. A turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine and a six-speed automatic transmission power the rear wheels, and an electric motor drives the front wheels through a two-speed automatic transmission.

Standard features include:

  • Driver-adjustable suspension and 20-inch wheels
  • Automatic headlights and full LED exterior lighting
  • Surround-view parking system with front and rear parking sensors
  • Leather upholstery and power-adjustable front seats
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control

Tech features include:

  • BMW's iDrive infotainment system with navigation and an 8.8-inch screen
  • Head-up driver display
  • Satellite and HD radio, Apple CarPlay and BMW apps
  • Harman Kardon stereo

Options include:

  • Unique upholstery and interior trim packages
  • Laser and LED headlights
  • Unique bi-color alloy wheels

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2020 BMW i8.

Average user rating: 1.5 stars
2 total reviews
5 star reviews: 0%
4 star reviews: 0%
3 star reviews: 0%
2 star reviews: 50%
1 star reviews: 50%

Trending topics in reviews

  • appearance
  • comfort
  • ride quality
  • visibility
  • acceleration
  • wheels & tires
  • technology

Most helpful consumer reviews

2/5 stars, Very Underwhelming
2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A)
Given that this vehicle has so much style, the technology that is available and the pleasure to drive it is very underwhelming. The i8 is a very comfortable riding vehicle (5-Stars), but beyond the ride and sleek style, the 5-Stars end there. There are none of the newest features like blind spot detection, etc. that are both needed (this care has a lot of blind spots) but would be expected. $20K Toyota's and Hyundai's have more driver assistance packages for 1/10th the cost. After trading a Porsche Carrera S for my i8 Roadster, it only took me about 30 minutes to figure out that I had made a big mistake. The Carrera is truly a pure pleasure to drive while the i8 is purely a disappointment. Acceleration is disappointing and on a few occasions when I hit a small bump in the road, the rear wheels seemed to lose traction and interrupted acceleration of the vehicle. BMW has discontinued this vehicle after 2020 and hopefully their engineers will come up with a replacement that is much more of a joy to drive. For me, fortunately I leased my i8 and have found a new owner for it. Now, back to my Carrera S for more enjoyable driving.

Features & Specs

MPG & Fuel
N/A City / N/A Hwy / 27 Combined
Fuel Tank Capacity: 11.1 gal. capacity
2 seats
Type: all wheel drive
Transmission: 6-speed shiftable automatic
Inline 3 cylinder
Horsepower: 369 hp @ N/A rpm
Torque: 420 lb-ft @ N/A rpm
Basic Warranty
4 yr./ 50000 mi.
Length: 184.9 in. / Height: 50.7 in. / Width: 76.5 in.
Curb Weight: 3671 lbs.
Cargo Capacity, All Seats In Place: 2.3 cu.ft.
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Our experts’ favorite i8 safety features:

ConnectedDrive Services
Lets you know about traffic and parking spots and, in case of accidents, can connect you to BMW's Accident Assistance for vehicle support.
BMW Laserlight
Helps drivers see farther down dark roads with advanced laser projection technology.
Active Driving Assistant
Warns of potential front collisions with vehicles or pedestrians and if the i8 is about to leave its lane.

BMW i8 vs. the competition

2020 BMW i8

2020 BMW i8

2020 Audi R8

2020 Audi R8

BMW i8 vs. Audi R8

If a test drive in the i8 leaves you wanting a bit more in the way of performance, the Audi R8 is a great place to start. It's powered by a 562-hp V10 with a great exhaust note and all the supercar performance you expect. It's slightly more expensive up front, but the R8 is much more powerful than the i8 and it still offers a comfortable enough ride for daily driving.

Compare BMW i8 & Audi R8 features 

BMW i8 vs. Acura NSX

Like the i8, the Acura NSX is a hybrid. Unlike the i8, however, the NSX isn't a plug-in hybrid. It doesn't have any stand-alone electric range, but it does offer a bit more supercar-level performance. The NSX puts out 573 hp and 476 lb-ft of torque with its combination of batteries and gasoline-powered performance, a big increase over the i8.

Compare BMW i8 & Acura NSX features 

BMW i8 vs. Porsche 911

If you're looking for supercar performance and the practicality of four seats, the Porsche 911 is hard to beat. Even in the base trim, the 911 Carrera outperforms the BMW i8, but the Carrera S — which is still less expensive than the i8 — dials up the performance even further. With razor-sharp handling, impressive acceleration and an excellent interior, the Porsche 911 is one of our top choices in this segment.

Compare BMW i8 & Porsche 911 features 


Is the BMW i8 a good car?

The Edmunds experts tested the 2020 i8 both on the road and at the track, giving it a 7.5 out of 10. You probably care about BMW i8 fuel economy, so it's important to know that the i8 gets an EPA-estimated 27 mpg. What about cargo capacity? When you're thinking about carrying stuff in your new car, keep in mind that the i8 has 2.3 cubic feet of trunk space. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a BMW i8. Learn more

What's new in the 2020 BMW i8?

According to Edmunds’ car experts, here’s what’s new for the 2020 BMW i8:

  • No significant changes for 2020
  • Part of the first i8 generation introduced for 2014
Learn more

Is the BMW i8 reliable?

To determine whether the BMW i8 is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the i8. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the i8's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more

Is the 2020 BMW i8 a good car?

There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2020 BMW i8 is a good car. Edmunds' expert testing team reviewed the 2020 i8 and gave it a 7.5 out of 10. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2020 i8 is a good car for you. Learn more

How much should I pay for a 2020 BMW i8?

The least-expensive 2020 BMW i8 is the 2020 BMW i8 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $163,300.

Other versions include:

  • 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A) which starts at $163,300
Learn more

What are the different models of BMW i8?

If you're interested in the BMW i8, the next question is, which i8 model is right for you? i8 variants include 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A). For a full list of i8 models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

More about the 2020 BMW i8

2020 BMW i8 Convertible Overview

The 2020 BMW i8 Convertible is offered in the following styles: 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A).

What do people think of the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2020 i8 Convertible 1.5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2020 i8 Convertible.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible and all model years in our database. Our rich analysis includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2020 i8 Convertible featuring deep dives into trim levels including Base, etc. with careful analysis around pricing, features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving and performance. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Read our full review of the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible here.

Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2020 BMW i8 Convertible?

2020 BMW i8 Convertible 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A)

The 2020 BMW i8 Convertible 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A) can be purchased for less than the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (aka MSRP) of $164,295. The average price paid for a new 2020 BMW i8 Convertible 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A) is trending $28,186 below the manufacturer’s MSRP.

Edmunds members save an average of $28,186 by getting upfront special offers. The estimated special offer price in your area is $136,109.

The average savings for the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible 2dr Convertible AWD (1.5L 3cyl Turbo gas/electric hybrid 6A) is 17.2% below the MSRP.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on new cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which 2020 BMW i8 Convertibles are available in my area?

2020 BMW i8 Convertible Listings and Inventory

Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2020 [object Object] i8 Convertible for sale near you.

Can't find a new 2020 BMW i8 Convertible i8 Convertible you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a new BMW for sale - 1 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $9,066.

Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including all models of the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible and all available trim types: Base. Rich, trim-level features & specs and options data tracked for the 2020 BMW i8 Convertible include (but are not limited to): MSRP, available incentives and deals, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (interior and exterior color, upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, cruise control, parking assistance, lane sensing, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy and MPG (city, highway, and combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (interior cabin space, vehicle length and width, seating capacity, cargo space). Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds expert review, safety rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2020 BMW i8 Convertible?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out BMW lease specials