Archive for the ‘BMW 8 Series’ Category
Rumors about BMW reviving the 8 Series have been floating around for many years and the Pininfarina Gran Lusso Coupe concept that the German firm unveiled in 2013 poured even more gasoline on the fire. However, BMW has extremely quiet on the matter and it seemed that the 8 Series wasn’t going to happen anytime soon. This changed today, when a rather unusual test car was caught stretching its wheels on the Nurburgring track.
And I say “unusual” because it’s larger than the 6 Series and seems to borrow some features from the Pininfarina Gran Lusso Coupe concept. What’s more, there are hints of M-designed elements, which means we could be looking at the highly anticipated M8.
The coupe feels pretty impressive on the ’Ring. Although it has a low stance, the car is quite massive and leans heavily while cornering. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s as heavy as a regular full-size car, but it’s not exactly an M4 either. The styling is obviously of the 6 Series variety. There’s a long hood, a heavily raked roof toward the rear, and a long decklid. However, the overall shape is notably different than a standard 6 Series and the body is significantly longer.
Although wrapped in camouflaged almost entirely, the headlamps are obviously slim, while the kidney-grille is massive, occupying more than half of the car’s width. Both the front end configuration and the profile seem based on the Pininfarina Grand Lusso concept. Below the grille, there are massive vents that may have been designed by the M division. The same goes for the rear bumper, which has large trapezoidal exhaust pipes at each corner. Another hint that this is an M car are the blue M calipers and the larger brake rotors.
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The BMW 8 Series is set to make its long-awaited comeback and while that is all set to happen, questions on when it’s going to arrive have yet to be answered. Well, we now have an idea regarding a timetable for the 8 Series, at least according to BMW Blog, who says that BMW’s new flagship model will hit the market in late 2019 or early 2020. But that’s not all. Turns out, the arrival of the 8 Series will come at the expense of both the 6 Series Coupe and Convertible.
Both the high-end coupe and convertible variants are apparently on the chopping block as BMW seeks to field a legitimate rival to the Mercedes S-Class Coupe and Cabriolet. The void left behind by the departure of the two models will be filled up by the 8 Series. There’s no word yet on whether the arriving 8er will strictly be a two-model lineup, but a previous report by Auto Express touched on the possibility of an entire family of models coming out of the 8 family. The same report also listed a number of trademarks that BMW filed with global intellectual property regulators pertaining to possible names for cars that will be given the 8 Series badge.
The 8 Series is also reportedly getting a series of of engines that will include a 3.0-liter straight six that produces 450 horsepower and a more powerful 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 that can develop as much as 650 horsepower without breaking a sweat. The twin-turbo V-8, it seems, is the engine that the German automaker plans to use for the car that will eventually have its eyes set on the Mercedes S-Class Coupe.
As for the 6 Series, the exit of both the 6 Series Coupe and 6 Series Cabriolet isn’t the beginning of the end for that lineup. Instead, BMW is reportedly keen on turning that lineup into its de-facto sports car family, one that will include a two-seater sports car that will compete against the Porsche 911 and the Mercedes-AMG GT.
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The long wait for the return of the BMW 8 Series is over. The German automaker recently filed trademark applications on a number of 8 Series-related names, marking the first concrete step that BMW is planning to bring back the car it once referred to as its flagship model. Among the names that were trademarked with global intellectual property regulators include 825, 830, 835, 850, 845, 860, M850, and M8.
A source inside BMW confirmed to Auto Express that the trademark of these names are part of a bigger plan that also involves the 6 Series. Apparently, BMW is making a reshuffling of its GT lineup after identifying the 6 Series as the automaker’s official answer to both the Porsche 911 and the Mercedes-AMG GT. As such, the 6 will be developed to become a full-bred, two-seater sports car to compete against the 911 and AMG-GT, leaving a hole in the company’s lineup for a premium performance GT. That hole, it appears, will be filled up by the returning 8 Series.
Specific details about the 8 Series have yet to be revealed, but it does look like BMW will be going all-in on the new model with an assortment of different variants, including a range-topping version that will more or less morph into the M8. Look for this model to compete against the cream of the crop in the luxury-performance segment. That includes cars like the Mercedes-AMG S63 Coupe and the Bentley Continental GT.
Engine-wise, BMW can go a number of directions on what it wants the 8 Series to come with. The likely choice would the 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8 that’s already in use by a number of M-badged models but don’t be surprised if the company also looks in the direction of the 7 Series’ V-12 engine. After all, the first iteration of the M8 was supposed to be powered by a V-12 before BMW decided on scrapping the project altogether because of a lack of interest from customers.
Rest assured, BMW’s customers are far more sophisticated than they’ve ever been and whatever perceived “lack of interest” in the 8 Series and the M8 is unlikely to be a problem now.
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The BMW 8 Series hasn’t been seen since 1999, but if recent reports are any indication, BMW’s old flagship model could be making a long overdue comeback by 2020. Details are still sketchy at this s point, but AutoCar reports that there’s already been some movement inside the automaker’s R&D center in Munich in developing to different layouts for the model.
The report further adds that these layouts are already in the desk of chairman Harald Krueger, who has been a strong proponent of adding more luxury models in the BMW lineup. The first of these layouts reportedly has a four-door configuration and has similarities with the BMW 6 Series Coupe, only that it’s bigger and more luxurious than the 6. The other possibility is dramatically different as it follows the layout of the old 8 Series as a classic two-door coupe.
These developments are by far the closest thing we’ve come to once again seeing the 8 Series. There have been past instances when the model was floated around, including in 2013 when rumors hit fever pitch after BMW unveiled the Pininfarina-designed Gran Lusso Concept. We all know that nothing came out of those rumors so this new buzz about the fate of the 8 Series is admittedly a little exciting, even if no confirmation has come from the company’s big wigs.
There are a number of reasons why it’s in BMW’s best interest to bring back the 8 Series, not the least of which is the model’s ability to directly compete against the Mercedes S-Class Coupe and the Bentley Continental GT.
Don’t expect a final decision to happen anytime soon though. With that reported timetable of 2020, expect BMW to make its call sometime in 2017 with the possibility of a concept version arriving in 2018. That gives the company time to gauge the market interest for the car before proceeding with production plans in 2020.
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Maybe it’s the launch of the new Mercedes S-Class Coupe, or just the fact that the old BMW 8 Series models are considered colt classic these days. But BMW is said to be thinking of reviving the nameplate with brand-new super deluxe luxury coupe.
Based on that rumor, designer Theophilus Chin has gone ahead and already rendered a classy two-door luxury BMW, borrowing features from the new 7 Series Bimmer as well as Gran Lusso concept. Chin’s BMW 8 Series has a very nice retro look about it that makes it sit well with the fans of the original 8er.
Although BMW is said to be calling the new luxury coupe 9-Series rather than 8 Series, there is little doubt that if they go ahead with the development of the car, it should inevitably end up looking something like this. That is good news. We can already imagine this bad boy with the firm’s V12 twin-turbo engine. All it is going to need then is one of those old car phones with a chord and it’s going to be perfect!
Rendering by Theophilus Chin
The BMW 8 Series was a car that never really achieved its full potential. That wasn’t exactly an uncommon thing for a car born in the 80s, and the 8 Series certainly wasn’t a bad car, but it’s difficult to shake the feeling that a V-12 BMW grand touring car should have been something more. And indeed, there was a way to get more from the car, in the form of the Alpina B12. This was a tuned version of the E31 8 Series, with more power and a more luxurious interior.
The downside is that it’s quite rare, being a tuned version of a car that was never produced in huge numbers in the first place. But one has just turned up for sale in Evans City, Pennsylvania, and according to the ad, it’s one of only two in the US. And this particular 1991 model was imported from Japan. It has been quite well taken care of, with only 28,000 miles on the clock, but it’s a difficult call as to whether it would be worth buying.
Continue reading to learn more about the BMW 8 Series By Alpina.