Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic Presenting BMW With “Major Challenges” in Development of i8 Spyder

DEC 19 2013 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 5

BMW i8 Spyder Concept Spreads Its "Wings"

BMW i8 Spyder Concept Spreads Its “Wings”

Both the BMW i3 and i8 feature unique use of carbon fiber in the form of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) throughout.

BMW i8 Spyder

BMW i8 Spyder

It’s the use of CFRP that make the i3 and i8 so unique.

As we expected though, CFRP is proving to be difficult to work with in certain situations.

As BMW told Autocar, CFRP is presenting “major challenges” to the engineers who are developing the convertible version of the BMW i8.

This version, known as the i8 Spyder, was expected to launch to the public in 2015, but those “major challenges” now seem to have the vehicle on hold, perhaps indefinitely.

Autocar quotes an unnamed BMW spokesman as stating:

“The last architecture presented some fairly major challenges, to be able to produce a convertible in that format. The rigidity was hard to find with that particular architecture.”

That same spokesman told Autocar that there’s now “no set time frame” for the launch of the i8 Spyder.

If it makes it to production, expect to see the i8 Spyder be a carbon copy of the i8 Coupe in most all aspects aside from exterior appearance.

If indeed BMW is trying to change the architecture so that CFRP works in convertible format, then it could be possible that the finished product varies dramatically from the i8 Spyder Concept shown in the images here.

*It should be noted that previous reports of the i8 Spyder being confirmed for production are now considered to be untrue.

Source: Autocar

Categories: BMW

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5 Comments on "Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic Presenting BMW With “Major Challenges” in Development of i8 Spyder"

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I think CFR Polymer sounds better than CFR Plastic:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon-fiber-reinforced_polymer

The word “plastic” sometimes implies cheapness. In other blogs, I’ve even heard i3 detractors say “the i3 is really just plastic”, etc. I view CFRP as a game-changer in the auto industry.

Just melted milk jugs and shopping bags with a few pencils thrown in to make it harder 😉

I remember a conversation I had with a high ranking BMW manager when the concept was first displayed. He said there was very little chance that is would ever make it to production. And he stressed “very”

What if they use an alloy instead? Toyota had to similarly redo the whole LF-A and it took them nearly a decade.

Why don’t they use aluminum like Tesla?

MrEnergyCzar