Fake BMW i8
Fake BMW i8

When is a BMW not a BMW?

Both a BMW i3 and an i8 have been on display outside the Vancouver BMW Store for many seasons now. They have accumulated crud and bird droppings, and been gently washed over the long expanse of time. People have tried to buy these units on multiple occasions, but they’re not for sale.

In fact, they’re not even real!

Upon closer inspection, the hoax is revealed. Both vehicles are detailed composite shells with rubber tires. What appears to be tinted windshields from afar are solid sheets of composite; nothing to be seen inside the vehicles.

Despite driving past this pair of imposters on a daily basis, I never doubted their authenticity until a friend, desperate to buy an i8, tried to circumvent a waiting list by settling on the display unit. Duped, and obviously not one for the poker table, he begrudgingly joined long line of expectant owners awaiting the real deal.

Displaying this duo of deceivers clearly attracts customers. Just how cheated prospective buyers feel when the jig is up is a conundrum worth considering. Frankly, I’d be choked. How about you?

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