The i8 review you've been waiting for - Jeremy Clarkson

by Bernie McGroarty on August 20, 2014, 10:38 pm
”clarkson i8”

I always go out of my way to read Jeremy Clarkson's reviews and this recent one, on BMW's i8 hybrid sportscar, was no different. The i8, offers a quick 4.4 second sprint to 60 and a limited top speed of 155 mph, while still having the ability to do 135 mpg when you are being nice. I wasn't sure how this review was going to turn out, especially after reading the following:
"I do not believe that the solution to our energy crisis is to be found by developing a car that has a normal petrol engine as well as an electric motor that has to be powered by an extremely heavy bank of batteries. Using conspicuous consumption to solve the global problem of conspicuous consumption is muddle-headed and foolish." I think I have to agree, but what did he actually think of the i8? Have a look at some of his thoughts from the Drive.co.uk review.

The i8 is so fabulously clever that it would be easy to overlook a couple of things that in a normal car would be considered big black marks. The windows don’t go all the way down, so you can’t rest your arm on the door as you go along, the boot is stupidly small and the rear three-quarter visibility is dangerously woeful.

Only if you concentrate do you realise that everything feels a little lighter and a little thinner than in a traditional BMW. It feels a bit like the Alfa Romeo 4C in there. Borderline flimsy.

All you need is to leave your short skirt at home, because climbing under the swan-wing doors and over the wide sill is a manoeuvre in which much dignity can be lost.

It does not feel like a normal vehicle. though. It feels — and I have spent several minutes thinking about this — magnificent. The braking feels normal. It feels brilliant. Nearly as brilliant as the steering, which is nervous and flighty but still the best electric setup I’ve found.

Ooh, it shifts. And grips. That little engine makes quite the most intoxicating sound this side of a Ferrari V12.

I still believe that with hybrids we are going down the wrong road. But with an i8, going in completely the wrong direction is at least wonderfully enjoyable.


Read about the first US i8s delivered at Pebble Beach here!

Read the full review from Drive.co.uk here!


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4 responses to The i8 review you've been waiting for - Jeremy Clarkson

BestCS commented:
August 30, 2014, 12:45 pm

I always enjoy Clarkson's comments on new rides. However, it is sometimes difficult to really know how he feels about them. Like most people, he might be initially impressed, but over time, the honeymoon ends and reality sets in.

I'd bet his bottom line would impractical and exorbitantly expensive.
Hangman4358 commented:
September 9, 2014, 3:40 pm

After the debacle with the Tesla Roadster I have stopped listening to anything Clarkson and Hammond have to say about cars. They lost all credibility in my eyes on car reviews. It is one thing to make fun of a $6k three wheel car from china that just from the looks of it everybody can see the quality. It is another thing it just plain make stuff up because you don't "like" a certain type of car for childish reasons. I will still gladly watch the stupid stuff they do on Top Gear though. You can tell that they are more and more out of touch with reality as the years go on. They tried to bring some back with the whole hybrid halo car gag but even that felt a bit flat and uncommitted.

I always feel a little sorry for May. I would love a program of just May explaining things in depth.
bredi commented:
September 10, 2014, 1:34 am

humpf.
hates hybrids but likes the potential of sport hybrids?

I hate driving minvans, but love driving sports cars.
duh.
guppysb commented:
October 7, 2014, 3:54 pm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hangman4358 View Post
After the debacle with the Tesla Roadster I have stopped listening to anything Clarkson and Hammond have to say about cars. They lost all credibility in my eyes on car reviews. It is one thing to make fun of a $6k three wheel car from china that just from the looks of it everybody can see the quality. It is another thing it just plain make stuff up because you don't "like" a certain type of car for childish reasons. I will still gladly watch the stupid stuff they do on Top Gear though. You can tell that they are more and more out of touch with reality as the years go on. They tried to bring some back with the whole hybrid halo car gag but even that felt a bit flat and uncommitted.

I always feel a little sorry for May. I would love a program of just May explaining things in depth.
May does have his own show, James May's Cars of the People.