Home / Home / Ultimate Driving Machine? All New BMW 8 Series Revealed

 

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The exciting new BMW 8 Series has been revealed on the weekend of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The sleek coupé steps in to replace the erstwhile 6 Series and resurrects the legendary name.

Mixing sport and luxury is not an easy job, but BMW seem to have been getting it spot-on for years. The latest in their onslaught of engaging ultimate driving machines is the all-new 8 Series Coupé, built from the outset to deliver thrilling driving dynamics. Stepping in to replace the 6 Series Coupé (and Convertible, eventually), the 8 Series features a bold, sleek design, with evocative lines that hide it mass very well, and aim to deliver aerodynamic performance to match its powerplants’ capabilities.

Among the highlights are the BMW Laserlight full-LED headlamps with optional Selective Beam. The sharp kidney grille is reminiscent of the Concept 8 Series. The long-ish body lines and sharply sloping roof-line lend it a lithe form that looks fast even standing still, with large wheel-arches set below the wavy flowing lines accentuating its sporty intent. Sharply designed LED tail-lamp clusters finish off the body styling. It measures 4,843 mm long, 1,902 mm wide, 1,341 mm high and runs a wheelbase of 2,822 mm. The sportier M-performance model seven millimetres longer and five mm higher, receiving additional front and rear spoilers for improved downforce. An optional carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) roof, a first on a production BMW model, lowers the centre of gravity and  enhances its agility. Further weight savings can be achieved with the optional Carbon package comprising air-intake bars, exterior mirror caps, a rear spoiler and a rear diffuser insert all made from CFRP.

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There are two initial models on offer. The 840d xDrive is powered by a 3.0-litre TwinPower Turbo straight-six diesel engine making 320 PS at 4,400 rpm and 680 Nm between 1,750 and 2,250 rpm. The M850i xDrive, with a new 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 petrol engine, makes 530 PS between 5,500 and 6,000 rpm and 750 Nm peaking between 1,800 and 4,600 rpm – 68 PS and 100 Nm more than the standard ’50i’-spec motor. Both are paired to an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission funneling the power to all four wheels via the xDrive intelligent all-wheel-drive system. A double wishbone front and five-link rear suspension plant the wheels down. Adaptive M suspension with electronically-controlled damping is also offered, as is Integral Active Steering. The 840d can sprint from 0-100 km/h in 4.9 seconds, while the M850i does the dash in 3.7 seconds. They weigh in at 1,830 kg and 1,890 kg respectively.

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The changes to the V8 engine are immense. The latest generation of the 4.4-litre eight-cylinder unit has been radically revised and several optimised details. Two twin-scroll turbochargers with charge air cooling are located within the cylinder banks, High Precision Injection, Valvetronic fully-variable valve control, and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing all form part of the M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology. The multi-hole injectors of the direct petrol injection system are positioned centrally between the valves and operate at a higher maximum pressure 350 bar, up from 200 bar. The crankcase is brand new. A new aluminium alloy has been used to increase the robustness of the basic engine. The wire-arc sprayed iron coating for the cylinder walls serves to reduce frictional losses. Reinforced, Grafal-coated pistons and optimised piston rings endure the greater strain on the crank drive from the increased output. The connecting rods, main bearing shells, cylinder head gaskets and chain drive have also been optimised. Enhancing engine smoothness is a viscous damper on the crankshaft.

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Inside, both models get complementing interior layouts as well. New ‘Climate Seats’ use air channeling to provide the seat-cushions and backrests with cool air. More offerings come in the form of the BMW Display Key, telephony with wireless charging, ambient lighting, and parking assistance. BMW Live Cockpit Professional features an adaptive navigation system, a hard-drive-based multimedia system with 20 GB of memory, two USB ports (type A and type C), plus Bluetooth and WiFi interfaces.

The new BMW 8 Series reaches initial markets in November this year and is expected to arrive in India next year. The flagship M8 is also due for a reveal soon, borrowing heavily from the M8 GTE which competes in the FIA World Endurance Championship. More versions, expected to be the six-cylinder 840i petrol and 830d diesel, and, perhaps, an 860i V12 petrol model, may be offered later.

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Story: Jim Gorde

 

About the author: Jim Gorde

 

Deputy Editor at Car India and Bike India.
Believes that learning never stops, and that diesel plug-in hybrids are the only feasible future.
t: @CarIndia/@BikeIndia
IG: @carindia_mag/@bikeindia

 

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