Richard Kim, the lead exterior designer for the BMW i3 an i8 discusses the technologies and freedom that helped his team develop these innovative new cars.

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The BMW Concept i3 is the first premium electric plug-in city car, while the i8 Concept is a hybrid plug-in and combustion engine sports car.

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i3 and i8 production models will be available from 2013.

The mobility of the future requires a new balance between global requirements and the needs of the individual. Solutions are needed to provide individual but above all, sustainable mobility.

The BMW Group recognised this need and now presents vehicles under the sub-brand BMW i which open new avenues, specifically responding to changing customer needs and combining inspiring design and a new perception of the term premium, strongly characterised by sustainability. BMW i takes a holistic, all-encompassing approach: with its customised vehicle concepts, sustainability defining the entire the value chain and supplementary mobility services, BMW i is rewriting the concept of individual mobility.

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Charging: conveniently at home, at work or on the road.

In practice, charging the BMW i3 is extremely easy, and even today, many people can use electromobility comfortably on a daily basis. This is because at a home charging station – whether a standard electrical socket or the BMW i wallbox – the BMW i3 battery is completely full after a minimum of six hours, and with a modern public quick-charging device 80 per cent of the battery is charged after 30 minutes. In the time it takes to have a spot of lunch or do some shopping in the city centre, the battery can be recharged for a further 120 kilometres.

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The BMW i sub-brand presents two special concept vehicles at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA): the BMW i3 Concept and the BMW i8 Concept. They demonstrate how the future of sustainable and yet dynamic mobility might look. While the BMW i3 Concept is purely electrically powered and thus optimally equipped for the city, the plug-in hybrid model BMW i8 Concept combines the strengths of both an electric motor and an internal combustion engine, delivering a high level of dynamic performance.

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The BMW i3 Concept, which was dubbed the Megacity Vehicle during the development stage, precisely defines as the first purely electrically powered BMW Group production car the future challenges of mobility in urban environments. And as the first premium electric vehicle it interprets the pioneering attributes typical of the BMW brand. With four seats, doors which open wide from the middle of the vehicle, a luggage capacity of around.

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