- The upcoming BMW M8 will have a new braking system with adjustable pedal feel.
- BMW is also simplifying how the M8's different driving modes and settings are configured.
- The M8 coupe should be revealed in the near future in standard and Competition trims, with the convertible and the Gran Coupe coming soon after.
We're getting closer to the reveal of the new BMW M8, so BMW is trickling out more details of the range-topping coupe. (There'll be a convertible and a four-door Gran Coupe, too.) We already knew that it will use the same twin-turbo 4.4-liter V-8 as the M5, which makes 600 horsepower in standard form and 617 in Competition trim-but the M8 could be more powerful than that.
The M8 will also have an eight-speed automatic transmission and an M xDrive all-wheel-drive system that has a rear-wheel-drive mode. So, with the big performance bits already announced, BMW is now talking about more important things: configurable driving modes and settings.
Modern BMW M cars are already highly adjustable, and the M8 will be no different. New for BMW is a Setup button on the center console, which will quickly bring up a menu on the screen with every available option, controllable by touch or with the iDrive knob-the M5 has a bunch of separate buttons for each function on the cluttered center console. The engine, all-wheel-drive system, and suspension all have three settings, while the steering has two. The gearbox's three settings are controlled by a button on the shift lever, and stability control can be deactivated by a button on the center console. There's also a button on the console for the exhaust tone. A red button on each side of the steering wheel can each bring up a saved configuration, so once you've got your favorite setups locked in, you should never have to worry about it again.
If that wasn't enough, another new feature that's debuting on the M8 are adjustable brakes, also controllable by that new Setup button. BMW calls it an "integrated braking system," saying that the "brake activation, brake booster, and braking control functions" are all housed within a single module, creating a four-pound weight savings. There are two settings for the brakes, Comfort and Sport, with each altering how much pressure is required on the pedal to slow the car. BMW says that feedback from the brakes is "unimpaired" by things like high temperatures or wet roads, claiming that the M8 generates "sublime pedal feel in any situation." This new setup is on both the M8's standard brakes and the optional carbon-ceramic units.
There's also an M mode button on the center console, which adjusts the displays for the digital gauge cluster and the head-up display as well as the responses from the driver-assist systems. The standard M8 has Road and Sport settings, while the Competition models will add an additional Track function for M mode. In Road, everything is fully active. Turn on Sport, and only the speed-limit and overtaking-restriction alerts and the collision warning, automated emergency braking, and evasion-assist systems will remain active. In Sport, the car's displays only show "relevant information for sporty driving," taking away some features such as speed-limit info. Engage Track on the M8 Competition-it asks you for confirmation when you hit the button-and every single driver-assist system is turned off. Track also turns off the audio system, blacks out the central screen, and severely limits the information shown to the driver in the gauge cluster and head-up display, which both get new designs.
Along with the new information and set of photos, BMW released a video with Martin Tomczyk, a race-car driver who runs the M8 GTE, chatting with Jörg Weidinger, the product manager for M driving dynamics, about the M8 and its new systems. They go into more depth about the brakes, the M mode button, and the new Setup button and take the new M8 out on a track. Check it out below:
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