In a launch event befitting the style and grandiose of the machine itself, BMW will finally pull the covers off its all-new BMW 8 Series Coupe, on the eve of the legendary 24-hours of Le Mans, on June 15th 2018.
The world premiere will take place a day before BMW Motorsport lines up on the Le Mans starting grid in the M8 GTE race car, for the first time since 2011.
Le Mans is the second-round of FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in 2018, and the third outing for the M8 GTE race cars, after the season opener in Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, and the US-American IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
Klaus Fröhlich, board member of the BMW AG, Development added, “There isn’t be a better setting for the world premiere of the new BMW 8 Series Coupe than the 24-hour race at Le Mans. The race is a pure demonstration of passion, dynamics and long-distance capability. These characteristics define our new sports car in a special way.”
The BMW 8 Series was first unveiled in concept form at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este event – reviving a hallowed BMW nameplate last used in 1999. Along with a sleek new design language – the 8 Series also introduced an entirely new cockpit architecture which integrated a sloping centre console, free standing iDrive screen and minimalist switchgear layout.
The production model of the 8 Series was developed in parallel with the M8 GTE race car. BMW claims its experience gained from its racing programs have been concentrated onto the development of the road-going vehicle – in particular – the BMW M850i xDrive Coupe model, which boasts a new 4.4-litre V8 engine, intelligent four-wheel drive, controlled rear axle differential lock, Integral Active Steering, adaptive M suspension featuring Active Roll Stabilization, and 20-inch light alloy wheels wrapped in high-performance tyres. A smaller 3.0-litre for the 840i model is slated to join the line-up in due course.
BMW is light on details, but it is understood that the 8 Series Coupe is being built on the 7 Series’ CLAR platform, and thus should also feature the flagship car’s Carbon Core chassis.
Competitors of the new 8 Series Coupe include the Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe, Lexus LC 500 and Maserati Gran Turismo.