By Wayne Gorrett
- 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 engine paired with eight-speed M Steptronic automatic.
- Most powerful ever BMW M engine delivers 625hp and 750Nm.
- Zero to 62mph sprint in 3.2s (Coupé) and 3.3s (Convertible).
- Orders now open, production starts in July with first customer deliveries from October.
BMW has announced a range-topping M8 Competition model of the flagship 8 Series Coupé and Convertible. It’s the first time the Bavarian automaker has produced an official M version of an 8 Series, making the new M8 the most powerful production M car ever built.
Both body variants are on sale now, with first UK deliveries planned for October. The M8 Competition will go head-to-head with the Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupé and the Porsche 911.
‘M’ exterior makeover
To separate the M8 Competition from the regular 8 Series line-up, the exterior has received a decidedly muscular makeover, with larger air intakes in the front bumper, a lip spoiler and quad exhaust setup at the rear, 20-inch forged alloy wheels and full LED headlights.
Elsewhere, a gloss black finish has been applied to the iconic kidney grille, wing mirrors and the rear diffuser. Additional exterior options include an M Carbon exterior package and upgraded ‘LaserLight’ matrix headlights.
The interior changes for this new performance M8 Competition see the deployment of a pair of sports seats adorned with ‘M8’ logos to replace the standard 8 Series front furniture. There’s also a red steering wheel-mounted M button to select different drive modes, plus carbon fibre interior trim and a leather-trimmed gear selector.
The 12.3-inch digital dial cluster behind the steering wheel features unique M8 graphics, while a 10.25 infotainment screen sits in the middle of the dashboard running BMW’s latest generation of its renowned iDrive system.
Just like the standard 8 Series models, the M8 Competition has a semi-electric folding function for the front seats, for easier access to the rear seats. The Coupé has 420 litres of boot space, while the Convertible’s boot sacrifices 70 litres due to the folding fabric roof.
Both M8 Competition variants feature 50:50 split folding rear seats to increase storage space and practicality. BMW claims fuel economy for the Coupé of 26.9mpg, with CO2 emissions of 242g/km, while the Convertible is reported to return 26.6mpg and a CO2 figure of 256g/km.
The M8 Competition is equipped as standard with BMW’s Driving Assistant cruise control system and Parking Plus Assistant, which includes automatic parking functionality and a reversing camera. Buyers can spec the Driving Assistant Professional pack, which adds steering and lane assist.
‘M’ engine and transmission
The M8 Competition uses the same twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine as the existing M850i, but this time power has been boosted from 523hp to 625hp. The combination of power, four-wheel drive and an eight-speed Steptronic gearbox results in a 0-62mph time of 3.2 seconds for the M8 Coupé and 3.3 seconds for the M8 Convertible. While both models are limited to a top speed of 155mph, an optional M Driver Package overrides that and raises the top speed to a blurry 189mph.
The M8 features the same adaptive suspension setup as the M850i, but has been re-engineered to cope with the additional 100 horsepower. The car’s engine mounts have been stiffened and the exhaust system has also been revised. Larger, more powerful brakes are fitted and carbon-ceramic brakes are available as an option.
As with the M5 saloon, BMW claims that the xDrive all-wheel-drive system in the M8 is rear-biased and only pushes power to the front wheels when required. Switchable driving modes are accessible via the iDrive infotainment screen, giving the driver the ability to deactivate the front wheels completely, making the M8 purely rear-wheel drive.
To register your interest in leasing the new BMW M8, please call our friendly and helpful sales team on 0161 826 9716.