It’s not uncommon for automakers to create special editions of existing models to keep customers interested, using exclusivity and exotic paint colors as selling tools.
BMW shouldn’t have any trouble moving the 2015 i8 plug-in hybrid, but it’s created a special edition nonetheless. Named for the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance where it will debut, the i8 Concours d’Elegance Edition is very special indeed.
That’s because it’s one-of-a-kind. You’re looking at the sole example, which will be auctioned off at the Gooding & Company event this Saturday and make its way into the garage of one iconoclastic owner.
Aside from its singular status, the special-edition i8 is distinguished by BMW’s Frozen Grey Metallic paint. Previously seen on other models like the previous-generation M3 (and mocked by Jeremy Clarkson on Top Gear), it’s got a finish that’s flat but with metallic effect.
On the inside, the i8 sports Dalbergia Brown leather upholstery which, in keeping with the car’s green mission, is dyed using plant extracts. It also gets the top Pure Impulse Tera World interior trim, with accents in BMW Blue.
BMW also plans to equip the i8 Concours d’Elegance Edition with laser headlights, pending U.S. government approval. The buyer also gets a charging station, and a set of Louis Vuitton luggage.
Unchanged is the plug-in hybrid powertrain, which consists of a 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder gasoline engine with six-speed automatic transmission, and an electric motor. Combined power output is 362 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque.
With its groundbreaking design, the i8 is sure to be remembered as a significant car. How will it stack up against the acknowledged classics at Pebble Beach today?
Perhaps one-off version will return to Pebble in a few decades, and move from the auction block to the lawn for display among other classic.