2019 BMW M8 Gran Coupe
The company’s most powerful four-door yet?by Ciprian Florea, on
The iconic BMW 8 Series is making a comeback, and this is no longer a rumor. The return of BMW’s biggest coupe yet was confirmed in 2017 when the German automaker introduced a concept car and a GTE-spec race car. What’s more, BMW also confirmed that the new 8 Series will get an M8 version for the very first time. Come 2018 and BMW announced plans to expand the 8 Series family with yet another model. And it’s not the highly anticipated convertible, but a four-door coupe variant. Yes, the 8 Series is getting the Gran Coupe treatment and more importantly, it will come in M8 specs too. A concept version of the M8 model was unveiled at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, and BMW confirmed that it will become a production model by the end of 2018.
With the 6 Series Gran Coupe still available, the 8 Series Gran Coupe may seem a bit redundant at first glance. But given that the 6 Series is no longer available in coupe form, the Gran Coupe model could be discontinued too, which would leave the 8 Series Gran Coupe as BMW’s main competitor for the Mercedes-Benz CLS and Audi A7. The M8 Gran Coupe would make things that much more interesting, as BMW will have a rival for the AMG and RS versions of the CLS and A7, respectively. The concept car provides a few valuable hints as to what to expect from the production model, but technical specifications are still a mystery. Until more data becomes available, let’s have a closer look at what we already know about the upcoming M8 Gran Coupe.
Continue reading to learn more about the BMW M8 Gran Coupe.
2019 BMW M8 Gran Coupe
0-60 time:3.7 sec.
Top Speed:190 mph
BMW M8 Gran Coupe Exterior
- Concept-inspired features
- Aggressive bumpers
- Unique grille and headlamps
- Coupe-style roof
I expect the production model to remain mostly unchanged upfront
While the concept car boasts a few features that aren’t likely to be seen on a production car, the overall design looks familiar and shares many cues with the two-door version we’ve seen in recent spy shots and the GTEs-spec race version.
I expect the production model to remain mostly unchanged up front. As seen in the rendering from X-Tomi Design, the M8 Gran Coupe could get the same front fascia styling in production guise, including the massive kidney grille with sharp edges and the big intakes in the bumper. The latter could have a slightly different shape, but the wide, aggressive stance will carry over. Changes will include chrome grille trim instead of gold (or black in certain trim options), an "M8" badge, and clear headlamps lenses. The concept car uses the yellow-tinted lights of the GTE race car, but this feature isn’t eligible for production models.
Onto the sides, the rendering suggests that the concept car is around 90 percent ready to go into production
Onto the sides, the rendering suggests that the concept car is around 90 percent ready to go into production. It will probably have the same wheelbase, a similar coupe-style roof, and identical character lines. However, the production model will get a slightly taller roof, bigger side mirrors, and actual door handles. The wheels will be different as well, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see the concept’s two-tone rollers with gold accents available on the options list. Of course, the gold window trim will be replaced by chrome or black, while the B-pillars will become more visible.
The rear end shouldn’t change much. It’s already heavily based on the two-door version, and it’s in BMW’s interest to keep both ars familiar. The side vents are way too big for a production model, but everything else should be carried over, including the big trunk lid spoiler, the thin taillights, and the quad-exhaust layout with big, round tailpipes.
BMW M8 Gran Coupe Interior
- New dashboard design
- Upscale materials
- Digital instrument cluster
- iDrive 5.0 infotainment
- Technology from the 7 Series
Common sense says that the Germans might have used the latest 7 Series as inspiration
While the exterior isn’t a big mystery, there aren’t many clues as to what we will find inside the cabin. Sure, the concept car has an actual interior that doesn’t look too futuristic, but there’s a good chance that BMW will change quite a few things here. The big "issue" here is that the concept car looks unlike any other production Bimmer inside the cabin. This means that either BMW will change almost everything in order to make it look familiar, or it will go with a unique layout for the 8 Series family.
Common sense says that the Germans might have used the latest 7 Series as inspiration, which usually happened with the 6 Series. The latest-generation sedan has a evolutionary interior the retains the elegance and premium feel we usually see in the company’s large sedan. But it the 7 Series could be a bit too subtle for the 8 Series, which is supposed to become the brand’s flagship model. Simply put, the 8 Series needs to stand out. In this case, we can look inside the concept car for clues, but the big question is how many of those features will make it into production?
Tech-wise, it should get the same features from the 7 Series, starting with the iDrive 5.0 infotainment system
For starters, I think that the steering wheel will be replaced. This unit is not only way too sporty for a production M model, but it also lacks the controls we usually find on modern steering wheels. What’s more, while a flat bottom is common in a Bimmer wearing the "M" badge, a flat top isn’t exactly the norm. The dashboard wouldn’t look out of place in a production car, but BMW will probably revise the A/C vents at the corners and the center stack. The instrument cluster should get some revisions as well. The wide center console is likely to be carried over as is, which would be pretty cool. Almost every surface will be wrapped in leather and Alcantara, while trim elements should include genuine wood, aluminum, and even carbon-fiber.
Tech-wise, it should get the same features from the 7 Series, starting with the iDrive 5.0 infotainment system with touch display and Gesture Control. The later uses 3D sensors to detect pre-selected hand gestures to perform tasks such as adjusting the audio volume, accepting and rejecting incoming phone calls, navigating to a home address and shutting off the screen. It should also get the Touch Command Tablet, a removable seven-inch tablet that allows rear occupants to control everything from HVAC temps to infotainment, and the Bowers & Wilkins Diamond surround sound system with 1,400 watts and 16 speakers.
BMW M8 Gran Coupe Performance
- Turbocharged V-8 or V-12
- Around 600 horsepower
- 0 to 60 mph in less than 3.7 seconds
- Top speed in excess of 190 mph
- Eight-speed automatic gearbox
BMW could use the twin-turbo, 6.6-liter V-12 that motivates the M760Li, the most powerful iteration of the 7 Series
The M8 Gran Coupe will most likely share underpinnings with the two-door M8, but since the latter has yet to be unveiled, we don’t have official information about the drivetrain. A likely scenario is that BMW will use a beefed-up version of its twin-turbo, 4.4-liter V-8, a configuration that’s already present in other M models. Output should be close to 600 horsepower, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the M8 Gran Coupe gets more than that. For reference, the Alpina B7, which is based on the latest 7 Series, comes with 599 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque.
But BMW could also uses the twin-turbo, 6.6-liter V-12 that motivates the M760Li, the most powerful iteration of the 7 Series. This sedan benefits from 601 horses and 590 pound-feet of twist. While the former needs 3.6 seconds to hit 60 mph, the latter achieves the benchmark in 3.9 ticks. With the M8 Gran Coupe likely to be lighter and have better dynamics than the M760Li, 60 mph should come in 3.7 seconds or less. Top speed is likely to be closer to the Alpina model at 193 mph. The transmission will be an eight-speed automatic regardless of the engine.
BMW M8 Gran Coupe Pricing
Pricing information is obviously not available at this point, but the M8 Gran Coupe shouldn’t cost much more than the M6 Gran Coupe. The latter comes in at $119,800, so it’s safe to say that the M8 Gran Coupe could fetch around $125,000. This would make it not only the most expensive model in the M lineup, but also more expensive than the competition. The Audi RS7, for instance, comes in at $113,900. A new-generation version of the AMG CLS63 S is not yet available, but the outgoing model starts from $108,900. Hopefully the M8 Gran Coupe will have something to offer for the premium.
BMW M8 Gran Coupe Competition
Assuming that the M8 Gran Coupe will indeed replace the M6 Gran Coupe, it will go against the Audi RS7. While the A7 was redesigned for the 2018 model year, a new RS7 has yet to be launched. A new version will arrive by the time the M8 Gran Coupe hits the market, but in the meantime, Audi is still offering the old RS7 in the U.S. The good news is that the outgoing RS7 still looks fresh on the outside. The interior needs an update and the tech isn’t exactly new, but the drivetrain is pretty solid. Powered by a twin-turbo, 4.0-liter V-8, the RS7 comes with 560 horsepower and 516 pound-feet on tap. Go with the RS7 Performance and output increases to a whopping 605 horses. The regular model hits 60 mph in 3.7 seconds, while top speed is limited to 174 mph. The Performance version is a tad quicker at 3.6 seconds. Pricing starts from $113,900 for the regular model and from $130,700 for the Performance version.
Read our full review of the 2018 Audi RS7.
The CLS is the vehicle that started this full-size, four-door coupe niche and the AMG CLS63 is also the first performance model in this class, so it’s only natural to include it in this comparison. However, the latest-generation CLS has yet to spawn a 63 model, and it might not get one anytime soon. Mercedes did launch the AMG CLS53 recently, but this four-door coupe is no match for the upcoming M8 Gran Coupe and the Audi RS7. Instead of a V-8, the CLS53 uses a twin-turbo, 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine and EQ Boost technology, which turns it into a mild hybrid. The drivetrian is rated at up to 457 and 568 pound-feet when the EQ Boost delivers maximum output, but that’s not enough to compete against a 600-horsepower Bimmer. Getting to 60 mph takes 4.5 seconds, while top speed is limited to 155 mph, both figures inferior to the competition. Should Mercedes-Benz offer a proper AMG CLS63 S version, it should arrive with close to 600 horsepower, but we might not get one. And the reason for that is called the Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe.
Read our full story on the 2020 Mercedes-AMG CLS53.
Launched at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, the GT 4-Door Coupe is essentially a more hardcore version of the CLS. It shares many design cues with the latter, but it also borrows some from the AMG GT sports car. More importantly, it has more aggressive aerodynamics and significantly more powerful engines. While the base version uses the CLS53’s six-cylinder and EQ Boost drivetrain, the AMG GT63 version is powered by the familiar twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8. The mill is rated at 577 horsepower and 553 pound-feet of torque, which puts it on par with the AMG GT R. Not as powerful as the upcoming M8 Gran Coupe, right? Yes, but it’s notably quicker, needing only 3.3 seconds to hit 60 mph. Top speed is nothing to sneeze at either at 193 mph. But there’s a more powerful version in GT63 S trim. Powered by the same engine, this one comes with a whopping 630 horsepower and 627 pound-feet on tap, more than you can hope from the M8 Gran Coupe. The sprint to 60 mph only 3.1 clicks, while top speed is rated at an impressive 195 mph. Pricing is not yet available, but the GT 4-Door Coupe should start from around $140,000.
Read our full review of the 2019 Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door Coupe.
The M8 Gran Coupe might seem like an awkward decision at first glance, but since the 8 Series will replaced the 6 Series, BMW also needs a replacement for the 6 Series Gran Coupe. And even is the latter doesn’t get discontinued like the two-door version did, BMW could use a more upscale competitor for the Mercedes-Benz CLS and Audi RS7. With a more unique design and a powerful drivetrain, the M8 Gran Coupe could succeed where the M6 failed in this niche.
Read our full review on the 2018 BMW M8 Gran Coupe.
Read our full speculative re view on the 2019 BMW 8 Series.
Read our full speculative review on the BMW M8.
Read our full review on the BMW 8 Series Concept Coupe.
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