While we’re patiently waiting for the road-legal, production version of the BMW M8 to arrive, the people from the BMW Motorsport division are already enjoying its curves. In an atypical fashion, BMW launched the BMW M8 GTE race car ahead of the production version, to perform some tests before the road-legal model comes out. Since the two will be sharing a number of components, the World Endurance Championship (WEC) should prove to be an ideal testing ground.

The car also got a fresh set of photos ahead of its debut in the FIA World Endurance Championship, all of them posted below. This weekend the M8 GTE will enter The Prologue, the official pre-season test at Circuit Paul Ricard in the South of France. The car will be in action at a two-day event on the track near Le Castellet (FRA) and take part in a 30-hour test designed to prepare teams for the eight-round global endurance Super Season, featuring two 24 Hours of Le Mans (FRA), concluding at La Sarthe in June 2019.

“The countdown to our first season in the FIA WEC and our return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans is on. The Prologue in Le Castellet marks another important step. That is where the team and the drivers will add the final polish to preparations before the first race appearance for the new BMW M8 GTE in Europe. The 30-hour test is a very special challenge for drivers and cars alike. The first encounter with the rest of the WEC field is sure to be interesting,” said Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director.

BMW Motorsport is competing with two BMW M8 GTE cars in the FIA WEC under the BMW Team MTEK banner. The color scheme for both cars is a nod to the long motor racing history of BMW – with the innovative BMW M Motorsport design, giving a brand-new interpretation to the classic BMW M colors of light blue, dark blue and red. A total of seven BMW works drivers will be present to drive the number 81 and number 82 BMW M8 GTE cars.