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BMW 8 Series gets subtle mid-life update. Image by BMW.

BMW 8 Series gets subtle mid-life update
Minor styling enhancements and a bigger touchscreen mark out the latest iteration of the BMW coupe.
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Newer articles featuring 2022 BMW 8 Series

2022-12-29: Driven: BMW M850i xDrive Convertible

What's all this about?

It’s hard to believe the BMW 8 Series is now about four years old, but time flies and BMW reckons its flagship coupe is due a mid-life refresh. The changes are pretty minor, though, with a new grille, new paint colours and an updated touchscreen representing the most prominent alterations.

As before, the new 8 Series will be available with a choice of three body styles – two-door Coupe and Convertible models are joined by the more practical four-door Gran Coupe – and a choice of three powerful engines. The 3.0-litre petrol and diesel engines survive, along with the 4.4-litre petrol V8, and BMW has confirmed an updated M8 Competition, too.

So what has changed?

Not a lot, really. As you can see from these pictures, the new 8 Series looks more or less identical to its predecessor, with only some U-shaped bars in the front grille to mark out the latest model.

Actually, that isn’t fair. There are some new alloy wheel designs, too, and BMW has announced new Skyscraper Grey metallic, San Remo Green metallic and M Portimao Blue metallic paint jobs, as well as Frozen Tanzanite Blue, with its silk matt finish. The M8 Competition also gets some new paint colours, including some extra ‘frozen’ hues.

Most importantly of all, though, every 8 Series will come with the M sports package as standard, including body-coloured exterior aerodynamic features, including horizontal struts in the lower air intakes. That also means there are M sport brakes fitted to all models, and they’re marked out by blue brake callipers. M850i versions also get some extra equipment to bring them closer to the M8, including a new front spoiler attachment, more aerodynamic door mirrors and a rear spoiler on the two-door Coupe.

The final exterior change will only really be seen at night, when the BMW Iconic Glow illuminated grille kicks in. That will be standard across the 8 Series range, although M8 models seem to be spared such an ostentatious feature. The good news is you can turn it off.

Is that it?

Not quite, there’s still the small matter of the cabin, where all 8 Series models (including the M8) benefit from a new, larger touchscreen infotainment system. There are new interior trim options, too, including a bold black-and-orange number for the M8 Competition.

And because the M sport package is now standard, there’s an M leather steering wheel, dark roof lining and stainless steel pedals, as well as M-specific floor mats. The 3.0-litre cars also come with more luxurious front seats previously reserved for the M850i.

And the engines are the same as before?

Pretty much. The basic engine, the 840i, is the same 333hp 3.0-litre, six-cylinder petrol engine as before, although it’s now available with the xDrive all-wheel-drive system. The 840d diesel, meanwhile, still comes with mild-hybrid power and gets all-wheel-drive as standard, as well as 340hp.

Above those is the 4.4-litre V8 M850i, which also comes with xDrive as standard and a much more impressive 530hp – enough to take the 0-62mph time below four seconds. But for outright power, you need the M8 Competition, which squeezes 625hp from its V8 engine and then sends it to all four wheels. That’ll do 0-62mph in 3.2 seconds.

So how much will all this cost?

We don’t really know yet, but we’re expecting prices to be very slightly higher than they currently are. That would mean the cheapest 8 Series – the Gran Coupe – would come in at around £75,000, while the M8 Competition models could start at about £125,000 in Gran Coupe form. The M8 Competition Convertible could hit £135,000.

James Fossdyke - 26 Jan 2022

2022 BMW 8 Series update. Image by BMW.2022 BMW 8 Series update. Image by BMW.2022 BMW 8 Series update. Image by BMW.2022 BMW 8 Series update. Image by BMW.2022 BMW 8 Series update. Image by BMW.    - BMW road tests
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