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BMW Announces i8 Spyder Concept: Teched Out i8 Looses Its Top

BMW's i8 concept made a splash when it debuted less than a year ago, and the German automaker kept that momentum going  in time for the New York International Auto Show with the announcement of its i8 Spyder concept. The new car, which retains much of the exterior styling of its older sibling, is a topless version of the i8 and features a slightly shorter wheelbase. But all of the technological beauty that made the original i8 such a hit is still intact.

Powering the i8 Spyder is a gas-electric hybrid powertrain consisting of a twin-turbo internal combustion engine and electric motor. A lithium-ion battery which can be charged via a plug charging station rounds out the system. In total, the Bavarians say the i8 Spyder is capable of producing 354 horsepower while managing fuel economy numbers of 3 liters of fuel every 100 kilometers on the European fuel cycle, and can travel up to 30 KM on electric power alone.

Take a look inside and the i8 Spyder is just as beautiful as the original i8. Missing from the new car is the old i8's rear-seats, making the Spyder a shade shorter than its four-seater brethren. Up front, BMW has included the same 8.8-inch touchscreen display found in the original i8. We weren't able to see the display running, but BMW says it will feature its ConnectedDrive system. Overall, the car appears to be closure to a production vehicle than the previous i8.

Unfortunately, BMW didn't have a Spyder on hand for the New York Auto Show, but rumor has it the electronic wonder will make its official debut at the upcoming Bejing International Auto Expo.