BMW i3 (i3s), i8 and the latest i8 Roadster could end their lives without next-generation replacements, according to media reports.

BMW i3s i3 at the IAA 2017 (InsideEVs, Tom Moloughney)

BMW i3s i3 at the IAA 2017 (InsideEVs, Tom Moloughney)

The German manufacturer launched its BMW i subbrand as dedicated plug-in models, unlike many other carmakers who preferred conversions of existing models.

Then, BMW began to develop tons of plug-in hybrids, using its conventional cars, while other makes began development of separate all-electric platforms.

According to Autocar, the future of the i3 and i8 aren't certain under the new strategy, which treats BMW i as a solution to "address a particular challenge or meet a specific demand". In other words, there could be a need for a new i4 model ("variant of the future 4 Series GT"), but i3 might not be replaced when it comes time for a new generation car.

BMW i boss Robert Irlinger said:

“We're still deciding the i8. We see a market for new kinds of sports cars. Whatever it’s called, or if it’s a new kind of sports car, is still in discussion.”

Autocar remarked:

"BMW i design boss Domagoj Dukec: compared the role of the i8 to the M1 supercar. He said: “It worked at the time, but why do it more than once? The i8 could be the M1 – it doesn’t have to always be a name at BMW. We always give an answer to what people and customers are requiring at that moment in time.”

"Dukec added: “With new i3 and i8, I don’t know; for now, we don’t think about it. For i, there won’t always be an i3, then an i3 after – i is not a parallel universe of BMW.”

The new strategy apparently envisions the iX3 in 2020 (using X3 as a base) among a total of 11 new plug-ins by 2025.

Source: Autocar