Tesla Model S 2013 vs. BMW i8 2014

Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) has been in direct competition with luxury brand automakers such as BMW and Audi. The BMW i8 is the latest from the German automaker. It looks more like a concept car from some sci-fi movie, and it is one desirable car to own. However, market watchers and potential buyers are most interested in knowing how the car fares in competition with the Tesla Model S, and an article from Edmunds by  Mike Magrath did just that.

Tesla Model S 2013 vs. BMW i8 2014

Model S and i8 specs

The Model S is available in multiple versions, but for the comparison, the Model S P85, priced at $94,900, with 416 horsepower, 443 pound-feet torque from its 85 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, and a 310 kW AC induction motor, has been used.

The BMW i8 has an entry price of $135,700 and is altogether a different hot rod with complex features compared to the Tesla, which is much simpler, says Magrath. The BMW is powered with 5.2 kWh lithium-ion battery packs that relay power to a 96 kW electric motor and a two-speed transmission turning the front wheels. Supporting the battery pack is a three-cylinder gasoline engine mobilizing the rear wheels via a six-speed automatic transmission.

Tesla Model S more comfortable

The Tesla Model S is a modest sedan with one motor, and its power source is kept under the floor. The car has a comfortable and spacious interior and enough space for luggage. On the other hand, the BMW i8 is a super machine with two power sources, two transmissions and four driven wheels.

The number of passengers in the front cargo area of the Tesla can be more compared to that of the BMW i8, which lacks rear seat comfort for the passengers, and the trunk space is very small at around 4.7 cubic feet of carrying capacity. The space is just above the engine, which makes it very hot and also can hold just one backpack, says the report.

More needed from both models

The Tesla Model S sails on the road like a roller coaster once the machine is throttled. The driving experience is awesome, offering maximum comfort to the driver without any sort of physical discomfort while sitting or driving. The BMW i8 driving experience is entirely different. When the shift lever is moved to the sport gear, the car starts moving on the three-cylinder motor and increases the volume of the fake engine noise generator. The i8 is not that fast, and the engine sound does not match up with the load. The chassis and suspension of the i8 can bear more weight on the tires compared to the ones fitted on the Tesla. On the other hand, the Tesla handles better at bends in the road.

In the end, the author says that riders “looking for an exotic performance car that makes exotic sounds won’t be satisfied by the BMW i8.” And for Tesla, it says that luxury sedan buyers demanding all the latest features may not “like the Tesla Model S as much as some traditional luxury cars.”

About the Author

Aman Jain
Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both Marketing and Finance side. He has worked as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, reviewing tech gadgets, playing PC games and cricket. - Email him at amanjain@valuewalk.com