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BMW i3 to Engine Swap: What to expect?

Now that car Youtubers tend to swap the electric drive for a powerful gas engine, it’s time to see how that works out for the BMW i3. The Tesla Model S, for example, has been fitted with a V8 engine. Let us see how it works with the Bavarian model this time.

The BMW i3’s electric motor is the least impressive feature. The i3’s EV engine is perhaps its weakest point: it’s slow and has a limited range. But the carbon-fibre chassis, quick handling and fantastic cabin are all excellent. Imagine if the mediocre i3 EV drive was replaced by a turbo four-cylinder.

The i3 would be a blast to drive if it had a turbocharged four-cylinder. Just like the BMW 330i’s B48 engine, it can make 255 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. It would be the most fun hot-hatch on the market if it had a manual transmission. It meets all the requirements for a hot hatchback, like the short wheelbase, light weight and excellent visibility from the outside. Since it’s a rear-wheel drive EV, it could be like an even lighter, funkier-looking 1 Series hatchback.

A gas-powered hatchback based on one of the most advanced EVs of its time might be silly and ridiculous, but the recipe itself would be entertaining. Silly as it may sound and BMW might not think of developing such a thing, but someone in the aftermarket might. It could be a lot of fun.

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