The 8-series is BMW’s biggest, grandest grand tourer, and it normally comes with four-wheel-drive and a big V8. The luxury cabin is swaddled in fancy leather, and pretty much the whole all of BMW’s vast suite of technology is fitted as standard.
The 8-series body is a two-door coupe, but a big one. The lines are swaggering and angular – there’s little attempt at the elegance or classical beauty of history’s best-loved GTs.
Now BMW M has got hold of the 8-series and wound up the wick. It has replaced a whole lot of the running gear with the stuff under the M5. This means a unique-to-M V8 making vast power and revving high, plus all-new suspension arms and dampers, and a four-wheel-drive system that controls the locking of both the centre and rear diffs. What it doesn’t have is the regular 8-series’ four-wheel steering, because the M guys say their AWD system can achieve similar results.
It’s a coupe, so a snug place. But not cramped for the people in the two lavishly appointed super-supportive front seats you can move and re-shape every whichway. They even adjust for backrest width. Out the back, small children will be cupped into the +2 seats, but it’s not for anyone beyond adolescence.
The interior is trimmed in wildly lavish style – posh leathers over every padded surface, immaculately and decoratively stitched. Jewelled with metal and crystal. Garnished in carbon fiber.