The i8 looks amazingly radical. Minimal-drag shape-work for efficiency is artfully combined with flourishes of crowd-pleasing flamboyance. The powertrain and structure are just as unorthodox and brave as the styling. A small mid-mounted 231bhp petrol engine drives the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic gearbox while a biggish 143bhp electric motor drives the front wheels.That allows three distinct sorts of propulsion. In sports mode youve got AWD sports-car driving with performance to roughly match BMWs own M4. Hybrid mode is peaceful and ultra-efficient. Or it can travel purely electrically up to 75mph using the plug-in battery reserve.