The new 2020 BMW M8 Builds Heavily on Performance, But It Does Not Forget About Luxury

This is all you need to know about the new 2020 BMW M8 and the 2020 BMW M8 Competition - coupes that are the Mount Everest of cars!

If you ever drove a big, overpowered grand touring coupe such as the Mercedes-AMG S63 or the Aston Martin DB11, you would know that the rest of the world does not really matter anymore. It is the same story behind the wheel of the Continental GT. BMW hasn’t played in the same ballpark for thirty years - since the gorgeous 8 Series E31. Now, it’s back. It is back with a car called the M8 - the first ever Motorsport-drizzled 8 Series - a car amicably proficient in ominous demeanor. While an exceptional exercise of car design and architecture, the M8 somehow doesn’t feel to deserve this name. The M6 seems to be more applicable. Nevertheless, this is what you need to know about it.

The 2020 BMW M8 Is The Most Expensive M Car Ever

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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Save for the well preserved and rare BMW M1 and M3 classic cars, the new BMW M8 is the costliest M car ever produced. The 2020 BMW M8 price starts at $133,000. The convertible starts at $142,500, while the Competition models start at $146,000 and $155,500. Add a $995 destination charge to this too.

The M8 is obviously not a cheap car. However, considering its size and performance, the 2020 BMW M8 not only fights with the likes of the AMG S63 Coupe or the Lexus LC500, but it also has its sights set at the Aston Martin DB11 and even the Continental GT.

In its competition guise, it could also remove that smirk of a McLaren GT driver's face.

All of the cars mentioned here are considerably more expensive compared to the M8. Heck, considering the build quality, top-notch equipment, and a "branchy" network of BMW showrooms and service centers, I can see many buyers migrating to the M8 from the showrooms of more exotic car producers. I am quite sure that BMW aims at them with the new M8. After all, that is one of the reasons it got this name.

2020 BMW M8 - prices
2020 BMW M8 Coupe $133,000
2020 BMW M8 Coupe Competition $146,000
2020 BMW M8 Convertible $142,500
2020 BMW M8 Competition Convertible $155,500

The 2020 BMW M8 Nurburgring Lap Time Has an Impressive Lap Time

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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While BMW did not reveal an official Nurburgring time for the new 2020 M8, the word on the street is that the new Beemer can lap the 'Ring in 7 minutes and 27 seconds.

After all, spy photographers measured this time when BMW test driver pushed the 2020 BMW M8 prototype at the Nurburgring a few weeks ago.

The thing is that I believe the new BMW M8 can achieve an even quicker time at the Nurburgring. See, the Mercedes-AMG GT four-door coupe managed to set a lap time at the Nurburgring of 7minutes and 25,4 seconds. The upcoming M8 Gran Coupe will have to be able to, at the very least, match this record. Considering that the M8 GC will be heavier and bigger compared to the M8 Coupe, I do believe that the two-door car is capable of running low 7.20 at the Nurburgring. Definitely so in its Competition guise.

2020 BMW M8 In Coupe, Cabriolet, M Performance, And Competition Guise

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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Apart from two obviously distinctive body styles - the Coupe and the Cabriolet - BMW unveiled two additional special options called the Competition and the M Performance. Interestingly enough, the sharper, track-focused Competition and M Performance parts are available for both - the Coupe and the Cabriolet.

The 2020 BMW M8 Competition is a Beast

The Competition package isn’t a new thing within the Motorsport offering. In fact, every M car is available with the competition option. The package sharpens up the suspension, gives a bit more oomph to the engine, and prepares a car for track adventures. In the case of the M8 Coupe and Cabriolet Competition, Motorsport included numerous changes that include:

  • A high-revving 4.4-liter, S63, M TwinPower Turbo, V-8 engine that produces 617 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque (17 horsepower upgrade over the M8)
  • The torque curve, that in the M8 tips from 1,800 – 5,700 rpm offers maximum 553 pound-feet of torque for additional 160 rpm
  • More rigid engine mounts for even more ferocious gear changes, and sharper steering
  • New M Sport exhausts with an M Sound Control buttons in the center console
  • Performance increase of 0.1 seconds for the 0-60 mph sprint for the M8 Coupe Competition (3 seconds compared to 3.1 seconds) and M8 Convertible Competition (3.1 seconds compared to 3.2 seconds)
2020 BMW M8 - drivetrain specifications
M8 Coupe M8 Competition Coupe M8 Convertible M8 Competition Convertible
Engine type S63B44T4 S63B44T4 S63B44T4 S63B44T4
Engine type V8 V8 V8 V8
Induction Turbocharged Turbocharged Turbocharged Turbocharged
Cylinders 8 8 8 8
Valves per cylinder 4 4 4 4
Stroke mm 88.3 88.3 88.3 88.3
Bore mm 89.0 89.0 89.0 89.0
Displacement cm³ 4,395 4,395 4,395 4,395
Compression rate :1 10.0 10.0 10.0 10.0
Engine power hp 600 HP @ 6,000 RPM 617 HP @ 6,000 RPM 600 HP @ 6,000 RPM 617 HP @ 6,000 RPM
Engine torque 553 LB-FT @ 1,800 – 5,700 RPM 553 LB-FT @ 1,800 - 5,860 RPM 553 LB-FT @ 1,800 – 5,700 RPM 553 LB-FT @ 1,800 – 5,860 RPM
0-60 mph seconds 3.1 3.0 3.2 3.1
Top speed (optional) mph 155 (189) 155 (189) 155 (189) 155 (189)

2020 BMW M8 M Performance Offerings

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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If you want your 2020 M8 to look as close to the M8 GTE racing car as possible, you will have to resort to some serious personalization. Carbon is the way to go and aside from the optional Carbon Package, you could drizzle your M8 with a wealth of M Performance carbon parts. Made available right after the introduction of the M8, the M Performance catalog includes the following unique touches:

  • M Performance carbon fiber radiator grille
  • M Performance carbon fiber side decorative grille
  • M Performance engine cover
  • M Performance sport brake pads (sourced from the race cars for shorter braking distance, sharper, and longevity)
  • M Performance Pro steering wheel with carbon fiber shift paddles and carbon fiber/Alcantara (or carbon fiber/leather) trim
  • M Performance floor mats
  • M Performance indoor car cover (this thing looks sick)
  • M Performance wheel bags

The 2020 BMW M8 Has Far More Power Than Advertised

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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A few months ago our Car and Driver colleagues had a bit of an argument. After testing the two-tone BMW M5 Competition and concluding that it can surge to 60 in 3 seconds, they’ve asked - how is it possible that this car has only 617 horsepower? So, Car and Driver did the only sensible thing and strapped the M5 competition to the Dynojet dyno at Livernois Motorsports in Dearborn Heights, Michigan. The results were staggering. The Dynojet measured 617 horsepower at the wheels (whp), and 606 pound-feet of torque. Considering that slipage in the driveline amounts for losses of about 10-15 percent, I can only imagine that the real power at the crank of the BMW M5 Competition is closer to 660 horsepower than to 600 horsepower. And you know what - the BMW M8 Competition has exactly the same engine under its bonnet.

In fact, this engine is so advanced that it is the backbone of the M8 GTE racing car.

The engine block, cylinder head, and many other engine components are exactly the same in the racing M8 GTE and the M8 Coupe you can buy and drive on the road. So, even those with a car powered by a 630 horsepower engine can’t have all the bragging rights.

The 2020 BMW M8 Has Track-Prepped Suspension

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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The technology behind the M8 suspension tells us that BMW developed this car with the track in mind.

The M8 Competition actually has a special mode called "Track", which ultimately turns off the driving aids, and, if selected, stability control.

In that regard, the M8 can become a full RWD monster. The manufacturer, who is brave enough to let something like that happen in a car with 617 horsepower, has to develop the best possible suspension known to a man. After all, with all the aids turned off, and 617 horsepower sent to the rear wheels, you are dealing with a swift behemoth that weighs in at 4,295 pounds. If there ever was an easy way to die, then it is this. And I adore the M8 for that.

To fight with the weight, with the power, and hamfisted drivers, the suspension gained forged links, a steel X-brace, and struts that connect the shock towers to the bulkhead.

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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I will let BMW explain the magic behind the M8 suspension:

"The rear axle also incorporates purpose-designed components to meet the exceptional handling dynamics required of high-performance sports cars. The M-specific forged links are one of the factors in the fleet-footed agility of the M8, while the precise responses of the suspension and damping elements are partly down to the anti-roll bars’ improved rigidity. Handling properties are given a further boost by the front end’s high torsional strength, which has been achieved with a tower-to-bulkhead strut and a newly developed, exceptionally rigid shear panel with integrated side sill connection. A steel X-brace and an aluminium transverse strut are fitted for an even more stable connection between the rear axle and the body."

In the real world, this setup, with, say nice Cup tires, allows you to match the agility of some supercars and destroy any imaginable direct competitor on the track.

In the "real, real world," on the streets, it will provide you luxury cruising expected of a grand tourer. The suspension setup on the new BMW M8 could be its most significant advantage over any other car on the road.

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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And, as if all the fantastic hardware isn’t enough, BMW complements the suspension with adjustable dampers and a DSC system that works directly with the transmission and the xDrive all-wheel-drive system. Speaking of which...

The 2020 BMW M8 Is RWD and AWD When You Want it to Be

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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Called the M xDrive all-wheel-drive system, the 2020 M8’s all-wheel-drive system offers three distinct working modes called 4WD, 4WD Sport, and 2WD.

  • 4WD
    Standard 4WD mode almost evenly distributes the power between the front and rear wheels focusing on safety, stability, comfort, and fuel economy.
  • 4WD Sport
    This rear-biased mode allows more power to travel to the rear giving the M8 a somewhat different nature usually associated with RWD cars. It will be for the best if you limit yourself to this mode, as the next one offers something almost inexplicable.
  • 2WD
    Deactivating the DSC will completely cut off the front wheels from the drivetrain. All the power will go to the back. I can try to explain what it means to have 617 untamed horsepower at the rear wheels, but BMW already did that. 2WD mode will "add up to a driving experience of singular purity for the experienced wheelman."

In short, if you do not spend your weekends behind the wheel on a racetrack, do not play too much with the 2WD option.

2020 BMW M8 - The Dials, The Controls, The Buttons, The Displays, The Gimmicks, The Make-up

  • M8 has leather wrapped gear selector instead of the glass gear selector
  • Digital rev-counter and the speedo can mimic the contours of the kidney grille
  • the rear carbon fiber spoiler mimics the contours of the CFRP double-bubble roof
  • Red M Buttons on the steering wheel for an added sense of urgency
  • M specific screens on the displays
  • Illuminated M8 badges in the seats
  • Multi-layer soft-top on the Cabriolet opens and closes in 15 seconds
  • Brake-by-wire technology and a set of actuators enable the driver to personalize pedal feel in two configurations - comfort orientated (read soft), or direct and harsh (read hard)
  • M Dynamic mode works with the M xDrive system to provide you with the spectacular controlled drifts
  • Each of four exhaust tops at the back has a diameter of incredible 100 millimeters. M8 will pass fist test
  • If you are careful, you could achieve 27 mpg in the new M8
  • M Mode button on the console does have anything to do with the performance. Instead, pressing it, you change the display settings from Road to Sport, or Track (for the M8 Competition models)
  • M8 Competition comes with a dedicated M8 Competition badge at the back
  • Rear carbon spoiler is different on the M8 Coupe and the M8 Convertible

Is The New 2020 BMW M8 Too Understated?

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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I like how it looks. With BMW, it never was a point to shout to everyone - look at me I am the BMW (save for the Chris Bangle era).

BMW showcased its almost noble qualities with a sleek styling, understated appearance, and somewhat aggressive fascia. It looked just right throughout history.

The new BMW M8 aces all of these points and almost gives out the vibe of a sleeper. However, I do understand that some require an additional show-off factor with an expensive Beemer. In that case, I submit to you a car so incredible you will not believe it exists. BMW calls it the M850i Night Sky and some of it is made of actual meteorites. I am not joking about this. I’ve seen the car at the Geneva Motor Show and took a photo.

See that grey trim on the sides, on the mirror caps, and bumpers? Well, that’s meteorite material. It’s alien! There’s more of it inside as well. BMW did not mention anything about the meteorites in its official press release for the new M8. However, I would not be surprised if BMW says yes when you ask them if you can make the M8 more alien? It probably can!

2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Expectations

Xtomi's Rendering of the Production BMW M8 Gran Coupe Will Give you an Erection
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This will be the newest addition to the rich and fantastic line of four-door coupe sedans.

The BMW M8 Gran Coupe will enter the playground with the Porsche Panamera, Aston Martin Rapide, Mercedes-AMG GT63s 4 door coupe, and the Audi RS7.

In fact, its actual competitors are its fellow Germans as the Rapide is quite old and outdated. Considering that, the M8 Gran Coupe will most certainly be able to accelerate to 60 mph in less than 3.5 seconds and reach 180+ mph. All for a price of the Tesla Model S P100D with all the possible options selected.

Is It Just Me Or Should The New 2020 BMW M8 Really Be The New 2020 BMW M6?

2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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I know that we live in a time when everything we know has to be reinterpreted, modified, and changed. Our perception of cars included. However, after learning a lot about the BMW M8, I am not convinced that this car justifies the M8 nameplate. Yes, it is incredibly quick, nice-looking, and probably great to drive, but nothing on it screams "ultimate" (like the S-class Coupe with a V-12, quite literally, screams).

This is my problem (well, not a problem, but a slight concern) with the M8 Coupe:

  • M5 transmission
  • M5 engine
  • M5 AWD
  • M5 performance
  • Generic BMW series dials and buttons (nice ones tough)
  • No V-12 (Let me just tell you that BMW thought about integrating V-16 in the 7 series in the mid-1980s, and developed a 9.0-liter, V-16 for the Phantom. That is why the V-12 isn’t such an incredible thing to expect in a top-notch car that actually had a V-12 back in the day. Remember 850CSi?)
2020 BMW M8 - Quirks and Features
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All of these facts give me a bit of a headache. Apart from increasing the price, and offering some sort of added image value to the customers, there is not a single thing that makes this car more worthy of wearing an M8 badge instead of the M6 badge.

Nevertheless, it is an excellent car I would take over any similar Mercedes, Audi, Lexus, or whatever.

One thing does silently whisper in my ear that this is a worthy 8 series E31 successor. See, the BMW 5 Series F90 lapped the ’Ring in 7 minutes and 38.92 seconds (journalist conducted test). It is possible that the 2020 M8 does the deed 15 seconds quicker. 15 seconds on the ’Ring is like a year in car time, and that tells me that there is far more to the M8 than meets the eye.

This Is How 2020 BMW M8 Competition Compares With Its Closest Competitors

BMW M8 vs competition specifications
2020 BMW M8 Competition Aston Martin DB11 Bentley Continental GT McLaren GT Lexus LC500 Mercedes-AMG S 63 Coupe
Length mm 4867 4739 4850 4683 4760 5027
Width mm 1907 2060 1954 2095 1920 1899
Height mm 1353 1279 1405 1213 1345 1411
Weight, (kg 2010 / 2085 1875 2244 1530 1935 2005
Luggage comp capacity l 350 270 370 570 197 570
Engine 4.4-liter, V-8 5.2-liter, V-12 6.0-liter, W-12 4.0-liter, V-8 5.0-liter, V-8 4.0-liter, V-8
Power 617 horsepower 600 horsepower 635 horsepower 612 horsepower 471 horsepower 612 horsepower
Torque 553 pound-feet 516 pound-feet 664 pound-feet 465 pound-feet 398 pound-feet 663 pound-feet
0-60 mph 3 seconds 3.8 seconds 3.7 seconds 3.2 seconds 4.4 seconds 3.4 seconds
Top Speed 189 mph 200 mph 207 mph 203 mph 168 mph 186 mph

Further reading

2019 BMW 8 Series Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Read our full review on the 2019 BMW 8 Series.

2019 BMW M8 Exterior High Resolution
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Read our full speculative review on the 2019 BMW M8 Coupe.

2019 BMW M8 Computer Renderings and Photoshop Exclusive Renderings Exterior
- image 718203

Read our full speculative review on the 2019 BMW M8 Convertible.

2018 BMW Concept M8 Gran Coupe Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M8 Gran Coupe..

2019 BMW 8 Series Exterior High Resolution
- image 717999

Read our full review on the BMW 8 Series Concept Coupe.

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