Alongside the ongoing development of the standard 8 Series, the engineers at BMW M are also working flat out on the M model. A fully camouflaged, early prototype of the future BMW M8 will be unveiled in a driving presentation as part of the support program for the Nürburgring 24-hour race.
Classical M features like larger air intakes, modified brakes and a sports exhaust with four tailpipes hint at the significantly boosted power and dynamic potential of the car and whet the appetite for a driving experience of intense emotional richness. “The conception and development of the standard BMW 8 Series and the M model run in parallel,” Frank van Meel, President BMW M Division, explained. “The future BMW M8 will build on the genes of the 8 Series and augment its DNA with added track ability and generous extra portions of dynamic sharpness, precision and agility. It all flows into a driving experience that bears the familiar BMW M hallmarks and satisfies our customers’ most exacting requirements.”
Development is also underway of a race-spec car, the BMW M8 GTE, to spearhead the return of BMW Motorsport to Le Mans: “The BMW M8 GTE development program for our Le Mans comeback is in full swing. Developing a new racing car is always exciting, and in the case of the BMW M8 GTE the anticipation is that much greater still. We are planning an initial roll-out for the first half of this year and are looking at giving the car its race debut in the Daytona 24 Hours in late January 2018,” BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt commented.
Meanwhile, back at the Nurburgring track action, BMW teams in the leading group at the 24-hour race all made it through the night without major incidents. No fewer than five BMW M6 GT3s are in the top 10 after 16 hours of racing. Alexander Sims, Markus Palttala, Nick Catsburg and Richard Westbrook in the no.98 car from ROWE Racing are the best-placed quartet, in second place.