2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe: It'll *Fly* and Look Good Doing It
BMW’s latest 8 Series variant is a mean four-door track machine.
BMW is in the process of rounding out its 8 Series lineup, and is arguably saving its best for last with the debut of the all-new 2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe, a wicked powerful and dare we say damn good-looking high-performance sedan.
We recently got behind the wheel of a base 8 Series Gran Coupe powered by an updated version of BMW's 3.0-liter inline-six and found it impressive. The M8 Gran Coupe takes that formula and dials it up several notches in the performance and personality departments by transplanting BMW's stonking 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8. The engine makes a stout 600 horsepower under the hood of the base model, and is boosted to 617 horses for the M8 Gran Coupe Competition. The zero-to-60-mph times for the M8 Gran Coupe and Competition models are on par with those of the M8 two-door—which we also just drove—at 3.1 seconds and 3.0 flat, respectively.
In fact, much is the same across the board, given the underlying hardware, and overall appointments and appearance are similar in scope to the M8 coupe and convertible. The obvious difference of course is the two extra doors, which were accommodated by stretching the wheelbase 7.9 inches over the M8 coupe. The GC is also 9.1 inches longer, 1.4 inches wider, and 2.3 inches taller. All that dimensional taffy-pulling allows real room for extra passengers. We sat in the back seat of the 840i Gran Coupe and other than slightly compromised head room for six footers, it's pretty spacious back there. A 40/20/40-split fold-down rear-seat arrangement allows for extra cargo capacity should you need it.
All that extra space is the primary reason why you'd consider an M8 Gran Coupe. Well, that and its looks. In addition to the added room, those two extra doors and resulting sheetmetal enhancements help lend the M8 Gran Coupe a more elegant profile than the M8 coupe—depending on your point of view and overall taste. BMW believes half of its 8 Series customers will opt for the Gran Coupe models, and it's easy to understand why. You're not sacrificing much in the way of dynamic capability, and you're getting more flexibility.
The M8 Gran Coupe's V-8 has become the staple of BMW's bigger M models, as has its M Steptronic eight-speed automatic transmission, M xDrive all-wheel drive system, Active M differential, control-arm front and multilink rear suspensions, and adaptive M suspension that electronically controls dampers. All of this M electronic sorcery allows the driver to adjust engine, chassis, steering, and braking settings as well as select 4WD, 4WD Sport, and 2WD rear-drive modes. You can dial it all up from mild (relatively speaking) to maniacal to suit your driving style and ability. Take it from us, make sure you're very comfortable with the M8 Gran Coupe before you start eliminating the nannies and go full on wild child.
M8 Gran Coupe Competition models add a Track setting; various suspension, vehicle stiffening, and lightweighting measures; and 15.7 inch, six-piston front carbon-ceramic brakes available as an option. Whatever brake system you choose is controlled by M's new brake-by-wire setup that offers either a Comfort or Sport setting. There are several minor interior and exterior enhancements for the M8 Gran Coupe Competition as well, mainly in the form blacked-out trim bits, special 20-inch wheels, and Competition badging.
Step inside the 2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe, which will target the equally new 2020 Audi RS7, and you're treated to all of the latest BMW and BMW M high-end features and appointments. There's an M Mode button that allows easy access to the car's dynamic menus next to a redesigned shift knob, a pair of M buttons on the steering wheel to enable favorite stored car setups, and an M sport exhaust button to make meaner sounds if you desire. In the center is a 10.25-inch screen running BMW's seventh-gen iDrive, and the 12.3-inch digital instrument panel and standard head-up display adjust depending on vehicle settings.
As befitting a car that starts at $130,995, there are huge swaths of stitched leather and metal accents inside, as well as all manner of standard and optional comfort and convenience options. A plethora of advanced standard and optional safety systems are also available. BMW is also offering a special First Edition model. Building on an M8 Gran Coupe Competition, First Edition cars feature several touches from the BMW Individual division, including a Diamant Green Metallic sheen contrasted by what BMW calls Goldbronze exterior trim accents and wheels. The interior gets an Ivory White/Tartufo Full Merino leather cabin with piano-black trim and a First Edition 1/400 plaque on the center-console door. Only 50 of these special models are coming to the States.
The 2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe is set to start production soon, with the First Editions expected to be delivered in March. It's one heck of a way for the Roundel to round out its 8.
|2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Specifications|
|ON SALE||November 2019|
|BASE PRICES||M8 Gran Coupe, $130,995; M8 Gran Coupe Competition, $143,995|
|ENGINE||4.4L twin-turbo DOHC 32-valve V-8; 600 or 617 hp @ 6,000 rpm, 553 lb-ft @ 1,800-5,600/5,860 rpm (M8/M8 Comp)|
|LAYOUT||4-door, 5-passenger, front-engine, RWD sedan|
|EPA MILEAGE||15/21 mpg (city/hwy)|
|L x W x H||200.9 x 84.1 x 55.9 in|
|0-60 MPH:||3.1/3.0 sec (M8/M8 Competition)|
|TOP SPEED:||155 mph (190 mph w/ M Driver Package)|