Two Survive Horrific Crash In BMW i8

2 years ago by Eric Loveday 19

BMW i8 After The Wreck

BMW i8 After The Wreck

Somehow, both the driver and passenger survived this horrific wreck.

The passenger was able to exit the vehicle under his own power with no injuries and required no treatment. The driver fared a bit worse, suffering from a concussion and two compression fractures, but given the severity of the wreck, most would doubt there’d be any survivors.

As BMWBLOG explains:

“When BMW introduced the new i8, their engineering team didn’t just speak at length about the lightweight savings of the carbon fiber structure, but also about the safety associated with the use of the expensive and cutting-edge technology.”

“Fast forward two years and today we see an i8 saving lives. According to a Bimmerfest forum member – and the EMS team – this i8 saved the life of a teenager. The father tells an emotional story that no BMW safety advertising campaign can ever match.”

BMW i8 After The Wreck

BMW i8 After The Wreck

Here’s the father’s retelling of this story:

“I’ve had a few pm’s regarding the demise of my i8, so I thought I’d post a quick synopsis of what happened now that the dust has settled. Yes, the driver was my teenaged son. No, neither drugs nor alcohol were involved. What was involved was an unfamiliar dark country road, an unmarked gate across the road, and the combination of gravel and antilock brakes. Yes, he was inexperienced enough to rely on the GPS showing the road continuing straight onward, and yes, he was probably driving too fast (no posted speed limit on the road, so knowing kids, yeah). They hit the gate, the airbags immediately deployed, blocked their field of vision so they did not see the immediate turn in the road and embankment. Car hit the embankment and flipped.”

“Here’s where BMW gets my loyalty. BMW assist was talking to him immediately after the airbags deployed. They alerted EMS exactly to where the car was, in a very rural, unmarked area, they alerted my husband and me, and within minutes the stabilization of the car and the passengers had begun. EMS personnel were talking among themselves when I arrived – they were amazed that the passenger had gotten out by himself and walked away (no injuries, did not require treatment), and that the driver was alert and talking (concussion, two compression fractures).”

“With the severity of the impact they had expected no survivors. In the days that followed, the insurance investigator and the EMS scene supervisor both called multiple times to say they had never seen anything like the stress-absorbing features of the carbon fiber structure and that the stabilization of the battery and human compartments on impact was amazing. They made it clear that it was the engineering of the vehicle that was responsible for my son’s life. And yes, the kid learned his lesson. He now drives an old Subaru with a speed tracking device on it (MotoSafety, if you have kids, it’s great), and the replacement money from the insurance company went straight into a hospital project in Cambodia. 

BMW i8 After The Wreck

BMW i8 After The Wreck

More images of the wrecked BMW i8 can be viewed here.

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19 responses to "Two Survive Horrific Crash In BMW i8"

  1. Daniel says:

    GM has had OnStar Collision alerting for quite some time (I’m sure well before BMW offered such a thing) Funny how it’s not a great idea until an import brand does it.

    1. Stimpy says:

      All brands have had this for a while and I don’t see anyone taking away from OnStar here.

  2. Steve says:

    Does the I8 have AEB?

    1. crossie says:

      Yeah, but AEB doesn’t do anything for gates.

  3. Tech01x says:

    Ah… they credit the BMW engineering, but then gave their teenage son a Subaru? It seems that this was the teenager’s car, as the replacement money went to the Subaru and a hospital in Cambodia? What about buying an i3 with BMW engineering, electric drive, and CFRP?

    Glad to see minimal injuries… but it doesn’t look like this i8 took the brunt of a wrapping around a tree. It looks like most of the damage came from flipping and landing on the roof, so this is about the structural integrity of the roof.

    1. John says:

      Subaru’s are are also knows for their safety…

  4. Doug B says:

    When will parents learn, put your kids in safe, slow, cheap cars.

  5. jerryd says:

    Not sure why this is considered a bad wreck when little structural damage happened, just the usual crumple zone damage as expected.
    I’ve been shopping for wrecked EV’s for battery packs and it is very easy to do the damage this one got.
    Fact is it only looks like a 30mph hit at most.
    With good seats, seat belts and airbags most get out unhurt.
    Though a good friend of mine just got T boned which slide him sideways with the airbag on hitting his right side twisted him so bad has 3 bad back discs from an accident that should have been walk away.
    If I owned one of these I’d install 4-5 point seat belts and sell off the airbags for better safety.

    1. Me says:

      Carbon fiber doesn’t crumple or bend. It’s failure modes are different than metal alloys. The CFRP passenger module is more akin to roll bars that are not meant to deform/crumple to absorb energy. That’s why it doesn’t look bad. You’re generalization of what a bad accident should look like is incorrectly applied.

  6. pjwood1 says:

    I’d be curious the state of design, where perhaps airbags shouldn’t inflate if a car has suffered an impact, but remains at speed and in control. This is just one person’s account, but blame has effectively been layed on the design. “blocked their field of vision”. If true, chaulk it up to the dangers of autonomy.

  7. DonC says:

    Very glad to hear that there were no fatal injuries and that it’s likely everyone will recover. We’ve now seen several accidents involving EVs where drivers and passengers have walked from or survived horrible accidents.

    Teenagers have brains that simply haven’t developed enough to provide good judgement. That’s just biology. So things can happen. Not sure giving them a hot car is the best of idea though. Let’s hope everyone fully recovers.

    1. Jay Cole says:

      Mostly unrelated: In my youth my parents provided me with a sweet 1988 Hyundai Excel GLS-door to drive.

      That bad boy was “top of the line” with 13″ wheels and had a power sunroof (which was boss in the 80s, lol)…and an engine block you could turn bright red (then have to pull over to wait to cool down) if you drove it at 75 mph too long.

      Top speed was optimistic at ~92 mph, 0-60 in about ~16 seconds. It literally caught fire on me driving down the highway, as I was foolishly attempting a ~120 mile journey, with about 100,000 miles on the odometer. /memories

      1. ffbj says:

        I ran through a locked gate once at about 40 mph, in an ’58 Ford, which was a tank. I was blinded by the lights of the car that has just stopped and turned around to avoid hitting the gate. The gate lost and the car was barely damaged. Yes those were the day.

      2. bro1999 says:

        My first car was a 1987 volvo 240….that thing was a tank! Not sure I would have survived a crash such as the one described above, but it could survive fender benders like a horse swatting flies! ha

      3. Tim says:

        I had a rebadged 88 Excel (Mitsubishi Precis) that performed much better than your numbers suggest. I have CHP issued tickets to prove it.

        Only issue was when it threw a rod but was fortunate that happened 100 miles short of the power train warranty expiration.

        Fond memories.

    2. ffbj says:

      I think the lack of brain development is evidenced by the father who let his teen-age son take this car out.

      1. Unplugged says:

        The i8 was evidently his son’s car. “He now drives an old Subaru…and the replacement money from the insurance company went straight into a hospital project in Cambodia.”

  8. Phr3d says:

    it is a bit hard to even Imagine that scenario in my teens:
    “You did well Phr3d, here’s the keys to a Diablo.” (guessing mom will get the Pinto station-wagon with the plasti-wood sides)

    working from the approximation of a Diablo costing three times the price of a Very Nice alternative. nawp, can’t quite get my remaining neurons around that..

  9. Phr3d says:

    somehow I deleted the first paragraph –

    Glad that the son is mostly ok, just the thought of losing a child is enough to cloud any parent’s day – to have that happen as a result of a gift you provided would be the epitome of grief.