Posted by: Jerry Garrett | December 23, 2011

What Was That BMW in Mission Impossible IV?

BMW Vision concept at Frankfurt, 2009

So what was that strange, futuristic BMW with the blue lights that Tom Cruise drove in Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol?

It’s an electric car concept that BMW has been showing in various forms at auto shows the past two years. Initially, it was called the Vision EfficientDynamics Concept (or some combination of those words). But it has sort of morphed into the BMW i8 of late.

The concept made its initial appearance at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show. I thought it looked like Shamu with iridescent blue teeth. Probably from eating krill during a red tide.

The concept was said to be powered by a three-cylinder turbo-diesel and electric motors. Great performance was promised: 0-60 in 4.6 seconds, and a top speed of 160 m.p.h. It was also said to be capable of up to 22 miles of operation on its electric motors and batteries alone.

It seemed like a pretty “far out there” concept when introduced, but public response was warm. So BMW says it will put the car into production by 2013, and call it the i8. No idea how much it might cost, but assume it will be well out of range for the “99 percent”. Bet it won’t have those scissor-style, see-through doors went it comes off the assembly line. Cool show car feature, though.

The BMW i8 and Paula Patton trying to upstage each other.

The surprise was that it was used in the film. (Perhaps not a complete surprise, considering BMW’s eagerness to cinematically one-up Audi, whose R8 vehicles have been featured in the “Iron Man” movies.) One wonders where they let the car go, since there is only one i8 in the world. Sending it to Mumbai seems out of the question.

More likely it was used only in Prague, which is quite near to Munich, where the car is located when it isn’t wowing crowds at an international auto show someplace. Or perhaps in the controlled environment of the Canadian Motion Picture Park in Vancouver, British Colombia, where much of the movie was shot.

The car did appear with the cast and crew for the New York City premiere in December at the Ziegfeld Theater.

Nice to see it really runs. Not all prototypes do.

Jerry Garrett

December 23, 2011


  1. […] Artist“; the fabulous cars of 1959 in “The Rum Diary“; and, finally, the futuristic BMW i8 concept car that Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) bafflingly drives around “Mumbai, India” in […]

  2. […] What was that bmw in mission impossible iv? | garrett on […]

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