After a long wait, the 2020 BMW M8 has been revealed. In fact, for some 8 Series fans the wait has been decades in the making, as the original 8 Series never had a full ‘M’ model, or at least not one that made it to production.
That makes this the first production M8 ever.
Available in both coupe and convertible body styles, the M8 will feature what BMW says is “the most powerful engine ever developed for a BMW M GmbH car.”
That engine, BMW’s twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8, makes 441kW in standard M8 spec, but is pumped up to a whopping 460kW when powering the BMW M8 Competition. Peak torque comes in at 750Nm for both, made in a wide band between 1800rpm and 5600rpm.
The standard M8 coupe takes just 3.3 seconds to hit 100km/h, or 3.2sec in Competition guise, while the convertible versions require an extra tenth.
Power is put to the wheels – all four of them, usually – via an eight-speed M Steptronic transmission, though the xDrive AWD system that features in the M8 is one not unlike that of the current generation BMW M5.
This means the driver can switch between standard all-wheel, a sports setting which diverts more power to the rear, or a full rear-drive mode activated when stability control is switched off.
To keep the Bimmer beast in check, the chassis has been fettled by M division with aspects such as upgraded rear axle links, stiffer anti-roll bars, and a tower-to-bulkhead strut under the hood.
BMW intends for this car to hold up on track too, with a cooling system designed to keep the car at optimal temperature under high-intensity driving.
The central cooler is found between two high-temp water circuits, while BMW has added an extra engine oil cooler, and a separate transmission oil cooler.
New to the M8 is the ability for the driver to adjust the feel of the brakes, with M’s ‘integrated braking system’ allowing the “brake activation, brake booster and braking control functions” to be controlled by one unit which can create a more aggressive braking setup for track driving, or soften up while on the road.
BMW Australia is yet to confirm with MOTOR any Australian details for the M8 range, but it’s expected the halo coupe will be available locally.