Back in November 2017, BMW whipped the covers off its new i8 Roadster, revealing the topless newcomer alongside a facelifted version of the coup?. And now, with a local introduction set for the second half of 2018, we can reveal South African pricing for both the i8 Roadster and the updated i8 Coup?.

The open-top version of the Munich-based automaker?s plug-in hybrid sportscar will be priced at R2 309 000, while the refreshed coup? will come in at R2 077 000.

A few jabs at a calculator reveals that the i8 Roadster thus commands a R232 000 premium over its hard-top sibling, which itself has increased in price by R61 700 with this facelift.

The new i8 Roadster features model-specific body strengthening elements, with the windscreen frame fashioned from carbon-fibre reinforced-plastic. BMW says the soft-top model is ?approximately 60 kg? heavier than the coup?. The Roadster also benefits from model-specific tuning for the springs, damping and dynamic stability control system.

The automaker says the electric roof is capable of opening in 15 seconds while travelling at up to 50 km/h. The soft-top stows in a perpendicular position, which BMW says creates ?around 100 litres of additional storage space behind the seats?.

Interestingly, the cell capacity of the lithium-ion battery used in both models has been increased from 20 to 34 Ah, while gross energy capacity is up from 7,1 to 11,6 kWh. The electric motor?s maximum output, meanwhile, has been hiked by nine units to 105 kW (taking peak system output from 266 kW to 275 kW). The 1,5-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine has an unchanged output of 170 kW.

Driving with the electric motor alone is possible at up to 105 km/h (this limit was previously 70 km/h), while prodding the eDrive button pushes the pure-electric driving threshold up to 120 km/h.

The i8 Roadster?s electric range is a claimed 53 km and its overall consumption 2,1 L/100 km (while the coup? now comes in at 55 km and 1,9 L/100 km), with BMW saying the soft-top two-seater will sprint from standstill to 100 km/h in 4,6 seconds (two-tenths tardier than the coup??s unchanged time of 4,4 seconds), before topping out at 250 km/h.

BMW i8 Roadster