On 15 June 2018, the eve of the legendary long-distance race at Le Mans, France, BMW will make the world premiere of the new BMW 8 Series Coupe. The new luxury sports car was developed parallel to the BMW M8 GTE with which BMW Motorsport will again take to the Le Mans starting grid the next day for the first time since 2011.
In the second round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) 2018, BMW will be fielding two BMW M8 GTEs. These racing cars already demonstrated their potential at the season opener in Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, and the US-American IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
“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,” says Klaus Fröhlich, board member of the BMW AG, Development. “The race is a pure demonstration of passion, dynamics and long-distance capability. These characteristics define our new sports car in a special way.”
Expectations for the new car are high, to say the least. Engineers have been road testing prototypes and development cars in public view for more than a year now, with both coupé and soft-top variants being caught on camera as recently as just last month. BMW's latest known outing for the car was in Aprilia, Italy, which is thought to have involved final analysis of the car's
chassis and powertrain settings.
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The 8 Series will be closely related to the 7 Series sedan in the same way the 4 and 3 series are related. That basically means the 8 Series will be more or less a coupe and convertible version of the 7 Series. The two ranges will share engines and naming conventions, but a hardcore performance version of the 8 Series will eventually come in M8 form, and is likely to feature an uprated version of the 592 bhp 4.4-liter twin-turbo V-8 already found in the M5.