BMW reveals Concept 8 Series at 2017 Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este

Article by Christian A., on May 26, 2017

If this design study leads to the eventual and much-awaited BMW 8 Series grand tourer, then we wouldn’t complain. After all, it looks so promising. It isn’t the final version yet, but the BMW Concept 8 Series that will be unfurled at the 2017 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in Italy officially and formally signals the emphatic return of the BMW 8 Series Coupe after around two decades of being left in the dust.

BMW confirms that the Concept 8 Series provides a good glimpse into a new BMW 8 Series Coupe that will be introduced to the auto market in 2018 as part of the carmaker’s biggest model offensive in its history. The BMW Group was tagged the new BMW 8 Series as the centerpiece of its “NUMBER ONE > NEXT” strategy that aims to dramatically increase both sales and revenues in the auto industry’s luxury sector.

Harald Kruger, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, described the BMW 8 Series Coupe as a model that will raise the benchmark for coupes in the segment while boosting the company’s claim to leadership in the luxury class.

As for the new BMW Concept 8 Series, Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President for BMW Group Design, remarked that the design study is the carmaker’s take on a full-blooded high-end driving machine. He called the BMW Concept 8 Series as a luxurious sports car that blends dynamics and modern luxury.

Exterior Design

Up front, the new BMW Concept 8 Series features a massive kidney grille, perhaps indicating the power of the engine behind it. Interestingly, the kidneys are merged by an unbroken frame, making it seem that the grille is one large single element. Moreover, the grille is designed so that it widens as it extends downwards. This grille is flanked by super-slim laser headlights, with twin hexagonal lamps. Likewise, the front apron of the new BMW Concept 8 Series is integrated with large side air intakes, as highlighted by a carbon fiber element between them.

On the rear, the new BMW Concept 8 Series features a low yet highly sculpted tail, a tapered passenger cell and wide rear track. Furthermore, the rear end is particularly defined by a harmonious interplay between volumes and lines. The rear end is marked by slim, stretched-out L-shaped blade-like rear lights extending to the flanks. The lower part rear apron features a dark carbon fiber diffuser as complemented by large, trapezoidal exhaust tailpipes.

When viewed from the sides, the new BMW Concept 8 Series reveals powerful wheel arches that indicate the study’s rear-wheel drive nature. It also reveals an elegant yet dynamic interplay between the coupe’s long bonnet and flowing roofline. Moreover, the sides of the study feature the so-called Air Breather, which leads to a deep surfacing bordered by two character lines. The new concept rides on large (21-inch) multi-spoke design light-alloy wheels with a number of aero elements.

The new BMW Concept 8 Series is wrapped in the Barcelona Grey Liquid exterior paint finish.

Interior Design

Inside, the BMW Concept 8 Series exposes a sporty yet luxurious cabin marked by a high-grade design and exquisite materials. For instance, the interior is wrapped in Merino leather in Dark Brown and Fjord White, as complemented by accent surfaces in carbon fiber and hand-polished aluminum.

Adding another exciting element to the vehicle is its use of Swarovski glass and a smoky quartz appearance on the coupe’s gearshift lever and the iDrive Controller.

Press Release

The BMW Concept 8 Series. Unadulterated dynamics and modern luxury – the essence of a BMW coupe.

The BMW Group is using this year’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este to unveil the BMW Concept 8 Series, the essence of a modern-day BMW coupe wrapped up in an enthralling design study. The study car will serve as a taster of a forthcoming BMW model – the new BMW 8 Series Coupe, slated for launch in 2018 and part of the biggest model offensive in the company’s history. The NUMBER ONE > NEXT strategy sees the BMW Group aiming to significantly increase sales and revenues in the luxury class, and the BMW 8 Series Coupe plays an important role here. “The number 8 has always represented the pinnacle of sports performance and exclusivity at BMW,” explains Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG Harald Krüger. “The forthcoming BMW 8 Series Coupe will demonstrate that razor-sharp dynamics and modern luxury can go hand-in-hand. This will be the next model in the expansion of our luxury-car offering and will raise the benchmark for coupes in the segment. In the process, we will strengthen our claim to leadership in the luxury class.”

The BMW Concept 8 Series reveals much of what is to come. “The BMW Concept 8 Series is our take on a full-blooded high-end driving machine,” says Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design. “It is a luxurious sports car which embodies both unadulterated dynamics and modern luxury like arguably no other. For me, it’s a slice of pure automotive fascination.”

The exterior brings together the past and the future. The BMW Concept 8 Series is immediately recognisable as a BMW, but also displays new design ideas and form-building techniques. “The design of the BMW Concept 8 Series provides a fresh interpretation of iconic BMW styling cues,” adds van Hooydonk. “And it also showcases a new approach to the use of forms which is reflected particularly prominently in the car’s surfacing. A handful of crisp lines mark out clear surfaces, and the car’s volumes are powerfully sculpted. Together, these elements make a forceful statement and create a model brimming with character. In short, this is a driver’s car.”

The flanks: expansive surfaces set within a sporting outline. The silhouette of the BMW Concept 8 Series spreads low and powerfully over the road. The interplay of a long bonnet and flowing roofline bring dynamic allure to the car’s flanks, while the striking upward sweep of the concept’s trailing edge provides a crisp conclusion to the car’s rearward flow and adds another sporting flourish.

Within the car’s silhouette, the refreshingly clean yet also dramatic arrangement of surfaces and forms catches the eye and creates a crisp, modern look. The sharply drawn lines coursing over taut volumes represent a visual promise of the vividly dynamic driving experience that awaits.

A look at the details reveals two expressively styled character lines providing the border for surfacing that appears to be formed by air rushing out of the Air Breathers. Further back, the eye is guided to the pronounced flaring above the rear wheels. The flanks as a whole draw attention to a new aspect of BMW’s expertise in the execution of surfaces. Skilfully moulded line sources and flowing highlights accentuate the athletic contours of the BMW Concept 8 Series. And the exclusively developed exterior paint finish Barcelona Grey Liquid – a greyish-blue with highly iridescent pigments – shows off the surfacing to optimum effect. Large (21-inch) light-alloy wheels feature a sporty and exclusive multi-spoke design and aero elements, generate visual depth and set the seal of the compelling appearance of the car when viewed in profile.

The front end: sporty, low-slung and visually striking. A large kidney grille, slim twin headlights and large air intakes form a striking, sporty front-end graphic. The classic BMW template has a fresh interpretation here, taking the company’s design language in a different direction. For example, the two kidneys are very low to the road and spread broadly across the front end. Taking inspiration from BMW coupes of years past, the kidneys are brought together by an unbroken frame to form a single large element. The grille widens as it extends downwards, emphasising the dynamic character of the BMW Concept 8 Series. Together with super-slim laser headlights and the hexagonal take on the “twin circular” theme, it brings a focused look to the front end.

The large side air intakes in the front apron intensify the car’s wide, sporting stance on the road and promise a very pure dynamic experience. The carbon-fibre element between them underlines the car’s sporty, high-performance character.

The rear: bold and modern. Emotional surfacing also dominates at the rear of the BMW Concept 8 Series, creating a low, highly sculpted tail with maximum width-enhancing effect. The rear is defined by the interplay between volumes and lines, which extend around from the flanks and shape the rear section of the car. The powerful wheel arches hint at the car’s dynamic talents and advertise its rear-wheel drive. And the tapering of the passenger cell and the car’s wide track shine a particularly vivid spotlight on this area of the car.

The slim, stretched-out rear lights extend far into the sides of the car and provide a connection between the rear and flanks. The lights themselves take the form of L-shaped blades and project out from the rear. They emphasise the width of the car and its muscular stance on the road, and their slender form gives the rear an ultra-sporty and modern flavour.

The dark, stylised carbon-fibre diffuser in the lower section of the rear apron adds extra lightness and a sportier feel to the rear graphic. Large, trapezoidal exhaust tailpipes frame the rear section and point to the dynamic driving experience to come.

The interior: an emotionally rich blend of dynamics and luxury. The interior focuses on the essential: the task of driving. Once behind the wheel, the driver is wrapped in the tightly enclosed ambience typical of sports cars. The surfaces and lines all gravitate forwards and underscore the dynamic driving experience. The grouping of functions into control clusters, e.g. in the centre stack, the centre console and the doors, gives the interior a clear graphic structure.

Among the standout design elements in the interior are the fluid transition from the instrument panel into the doors and the sporty, enveloping feel of the interior. This impression is magnified by the smooth connection between the centre console and instrument panel, which together form the nucleus of the interior. The high centre console and the instrument panel’s low visual focus add further emphasis to the snug and sporty feeling of space.

The interior of the BMW Concept 8 Series actively explores the contrasts between emotion and engineering, dynamic flair and luxury; its form suggests supreme sportiness, while exquisite materials exude exclusivity and high-grade design. For example, all of the driver’s contact points with the car are brimming with sporting character. The exclusive sports seats are slim in design, the carbon-fibre shell providing the basic structure and the finest leather making them the perfect place to sit. The steering wheel continues along similar lines, its hand-polished aluminium spokes arrowing forward purposefully, and the red-anodised shift paddles bring the race track to mind. The contrast of aluminium and dark leather on the gripping surfaces emphasises this luxurious sense of sportiness in various details.

Merino leather in Dark Brown and Fjord White lends the interior a high-quality ambience. Accent surfaces in carbon fibre and hand-polished aluminium create deliberate contrasts and radiate a sporty and technical feel. Plus, a faceted ground gearshift lever and the iDrive Controller made from Swarovski glass with a smoky quartz look treat the interior to some modern and classy finishing touches.

A sign of things to come. The BMW Concept 8 Series is a preview of a model which BMW is set to introduce in a similar form in the coming year. The BMW 8 Series Coupe will build on the company’s successful tradition of luxurious sports cars and adds another exciting model – a genuine dream car – to its existing luxury-class line-up.

The BMW 8 Series Coupe will bring together razor-sharp dynamics and modern luxury, and set new benchmarks in the luxury coupe segment.

Source: BMW

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