Cars & Technology27 Apr 2018

In the final stage of the series production development process, the new BMW 8 Series Coupé is exhibiting the entire spectrum of its dynamic handling potential.

Test drives in Wales are in the final stages of coordinating the drive and suspension systems. The key focus is on the BMW M850i xDrive Coupé; with its redeveloped V8 engine, intelligent four-wheel drive technology, active rear axle differential lock, Adaptive M suspension Professional with active roll stabilisation and Integral Active Steering, it is a perfect harmony of sportiness and comfort.

The electronically controlled dampers, Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and four-wheel drive system are precisely orientated to the selected driving mode. The rear wheel-focused setup of the new BMW xDrive system is perceptible in every driving mode, whilst particularly ambitious drivers benefit from the active differential lock in the rear axle transmission, which provides maximum traction when accelerating out of bends.

The active differential lock in the rear axle transmission provides maximum traction when accelerating out of bends

“The thing that always impresses when test driving the new BMW 8 Series Coupé is its adaptability,” says Markus Flasch, BMW 8 Series Project Manager. “Whether a driver expresses his or her wishes with regard to comfort and sportiness using the accelerator pedal or by pressing a button, the vehicle immediately adapts perfectly to each setting.”

A low centre of gravity and high stiffness for body and suspension form the basis for the new BMW 8 Series Coupé’s highly dynamic handling characteristics. In the case of the BMW M850i xDrive Coupé, both agility and direct steering behaviour are additionally assisted by the standard Integral Active Steering and active roll stability. Moreover, the electronically controlled dampers are able to provide for maximum wheel stability at any time, so that contact with the road is guaranteed even on short stretches of uneven surface.

“The new BMW 8 Series Coupé will be available exclusively with mixed tyres. This gave us the possibility when coordinating the suspension control systems to exploit the potential of the wide rear wheels to attain particularly sporty handling characteristics,” commented Jos Van As, head of Suspension Application.

Maximum torque has increased by 100Nm to 750Nm and is available at 1,800rpm

As the embodiment of both supreme and sporty power delivery, the new V8 power unit effectively contributes towards the performance of the BMW M850i xDrive Coupé. Despite weighing the same as the predecessor engine, the new power unit mobilises an output that has been increased by 50kW/68hp to 390kW/530hp. The eight-cylinder engine delivers its power to an extensively further developed 8-speed Steptronic sport transmission characterised by expanded spread and further shortened shift times.

“The new V8 engine offers exactly the right balance between performance and emotion, which is what also sets the new BMW 8 Series Coupé apart,” says Christian Billig, head of Drive System Integration. “Above all, the eight-cylinder harmonises perfectly with the further developed Steptronic transmission during dynamic acceleration. At the same time, the sound development of the sports exhaust system authentically reflects the car’s power delivery. And thanks to BMW xDrive and active rear axle locking, the engine always transfers power precisely to where it can be best converted into driving dynamics.

Outside the Welsh racetrack and cordoned-off proving grounds, prototypes are also being tested on public roads to obtain information on customer-relevant characteristics in driving situations as close to reality as possible. They complement the information gathered during winter test drives in Arjeplog in Sweden, on the BMW Group proving ground in Miramas in the South of France, at the testing centre on the Nürburgring Nordschleife and during initial racing circuit deployment.

The BMW 8 Series Coupé is due to go on sale later this year

Find out about the BMW Concept 8 Series here.

Share this page

Search News

Latest Tweet

Subscribe to News

Get access to all the latest BMW News.

BMW Magazine

The BMW Magazine app brings you regular updates and new content about The Ultimate Driving and the BMW lifestyle.