The new BMW M8 performance coupe is nearing the end of its development programme, and looks set to be the most powerful road car the brand has ever produced. The German firm plans to launch its flagship M car at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, alongside its latest M3 sports saloon and new M135i hot hatchback.
The new M8 will be powered by the same 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine as the BMW M5, mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox and the firm’s xDrive all-wheel-drive system. Two power outputs will be available, with the base model producing upwards of 600bhp, while a more potent Competition variant will offer around 625bhp.
We’re told that xDrive system will be heavily rear-biased, as it is on the M5, and that a rear-wheel-drive mode will also be included. Later in its life-span, the M8 Coupe will be joined by an M8 Convertible and a four-door M8 Gran Coupe, as previewed by the M8 Gran Coupe concept from the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.
BMW’s M division recently released some official “spy shots” of M8 test mules undergoing development at the Estoril circuit in Portugal, alongside an outline of its planned performance enhancements. Updates include increased body and chassis rigidity, a reduced kerb weight, a lower centre of gravity, a wider track and a revised steering and suspension setup.
Although it’s keeping a tight lid on the 0-62mph and top speed performance figures of the M8 range, BMW has announced that the car’s combined fuel economy will be in the region of 26mpg with CO2 emissions pegged between 243 and 246g/km. It’s unlikely that’s going to deter many prospective M8 buyers.
BMW M8 GTE concept
BMW gave us our first hint at the new M8’s proportions back in 2017, when its 2018 M8 GTE Le Mans racer appeared at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Frank van Meel, President of BMW’s M Division, said: “The conception and development of the standard BMW 8 Series and the M model run in parallel.
“The future BMW M8 will build on the genes of the 8 Series and augment its DNA with added track ability and generous extra portions of dynamic sharpness, precision and agility. It all flows into a driving experience that bears the familiar BMW M hallmarks and satisfies our customers’ most exacting requirements.”
Are you looking forward to seeing the BMW M8 in full? Let us know below…