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BMW M8 Competition for UK. Image by BMW.

BMW M8 Competition for UK
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We like a BMW M car...

Indeed we do, and here we have two new ones. Actually, technically, four, but you can't have them all in the UK, so yeah, maybe just two.

What are you on about?

Right, well, BMW's M division has released details of the new 8 Series-based M8, to be offered in both Coupe and Convertible body styles. But, as has become the way for the German company, there will be regular and Competition variants of the M8, in hard-top or open-top guises. However, BMW UK has stated that only the Competition models will be on sale here. So let's focus on those, shall we?

As you were...

You can see the visual makeover for yourself, with 20-inch rims, lots of dark detailing, unique door mirrors, more aggressive bodywork and, of course, quad exhaust outlets. One thing to watch for though: while the M8 Coupe will get a carbon roof as standard, the cars pictured here also feature the optional M Carbon exterior package. Inside, there are gorgeous new seats, carbon fibre trim, red highlights such as on the M mode and engine-start buttons (as first seen on the BMW M5), bespoke digital instrumentation and a chunky new gear lever, plus the option to swathe the car in tactile Alcantara.

Is it an M5 underneath?

I doubt BMW M's engineers would take kindly to the suggestion that the M8 is basically the same car with a different body, but the M8 certainly shares all of the M5's key components, starting with the engine. It's a twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8, producing 625hp at 6,000rpm and 750Nm of torque at 1,800-5,600rpm. Bolted to it is an eight-speed M Steptronic auto with three selectable levels of 'Drivelogic' control and of course, a fully manual mode. That divvies up power front and rear to the M xDrive all-wheel-drive system, while the rear torque split is managed by the Active M Differential. The driver can customise operation of the four-wheel drive, too, choosing between 4WD, 4WD Sport or 2WD. As in the M5, the latter mode is purely rear-wheel drive - and can only be selected when the stability control system is fully turned off. Presumably that isn't the setting to use if you want to match BMW's claimed 0-62mph time of as low as 3.2 seconds...

Tidy. And in the corners?

As you'd hope, BMW M has done more than a little tweaking to the chassis of the 8 Series. The tracks are wider and it's stiffer for a start, while the firmer engine mounts on the Competition version are said to help make the whole car sharper again. There's adaptive damping, big brakes, variable ratio steering calibrated specifically to this car and even driver-selectable brake pedal feel. Particularly keen buyers can upgrade to carbon-ceramic brakes.

Speaking of which... how much?

The BMW M8 Competition Coupe is 123,435 on-the-road, while the Convertible variant is 130,435. But hold fire on pressing 'order' until you see the M8 Gran Coupe that's expected to debut later this year as well, as we reckon that'll be the choice of the lot.

Shane O' Donoghue - 5 Jun 2019

2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.

2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.2020 BMW M8. Image by BMW.    - BMW road tests
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