First details on the BMW M8

BMW isn’t taking its time with additional variants of its revived 8-Series. Coupe and convertible versions have already been revealed, and soon there will be a more practical 8-Series Gran Coupe liftback sedan and high-performance M8 as well.

While the 8-Series Gran Coupe will feature the same mechanical setup as other 8-Series members, the M8, which will be available in all three 8-Series body styles, is slated to debut some new technologies.

The engine and powertrain will be lifted straight out of the M5, meaning a 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V-8, 8-speed automatic, and rear-biased all-wheel-drive system with driver selectable rear-wheel drive. Peak output should come in close to 600 horsepower and stretch even higher in M8 Competition guise.

New to the M8 range will be an M-specific display and control system, a new braking system, and a new M Mode with a dedicated Track setting for M8 Competition models.

2020 BMW M8 prototype

2020 BMW M8 prototype

All M8s will feature a Setup button on the center console that opens up a specific menu in the display system where powertrain and chassis systems, including the all-wheel drive and brakes, can be adjusted. For the brakes, the conventional vacuum booster has been replaced by an electric motor that applies force to the master cylinder plunger.

This electronic setup is said to be faster and more precise. The result is that braking feedback to the driver is unaffected, for example during high brake temperatures, aggressive cornering or when the road surfaces are wet or slippery. The M version of this technology also allows the driver to choose between Comfort and Sport settings via the aforementioned Setup button.

2020 BMW M8 prototype

2020 BMW M8 prototype

As for the new M Mode, this adjusts all the various electronic driver aids and brings up specific screens for the digital instrument cluster and head-up display. With M Mode activated via a button on the center console, the driver can then choose between Road and Sport settings and, in the case of the M8 Competition, a Track setting.

The different settings will vary what information is presented to the driver, as well as what electronic driver aids are switched on. With the Track setting, which BMW stressed is purely for use on a closed circuit, all electronic driver aids are switched off, including the collision warning and automatic emergency braking. The audio system and infotainment screen are also switched off to allow the driver to concentrate on the road ahead.

2020 BMW M8 prototype

2020 BMW M8 prototype

The M8 will also benefit from enhanced body rigidity compared to the regular 8-Series. The engineers have also looked at enhancing weight distribution and the center of gravity by tweaking the chassis components and their mounting, using lessons from the M8 race program. BMW M said weight has been minimized though we doubt the car’s curb weight will slip below the 4,000-pound mark. The 8-Series is a heavy beast.

The M8 coupe and M8 Convertible are due to arrive this year, with the M8 Gran Coupe likely to trail the 2-door cars by six months to a year. It’s too early to talk pricing but expect a starting price around the $ 150,000 mark. Alternatives include the Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupe and Bentley Continental GT.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

High Gear Media Network Feed

Share This:

Leave a Reply