WORLD PREMIERE: BMW 8 Series Convertible — First Drop-Top 8 Ever

8-Series, News | November 1st, 2018 by 40
BMW 8 Series Convertible images 32 830x553

Back in 1989, when the BMW 8 Series first debuted, it was only developed as a coupe. At the time, it was BMW’s most technologically-advanced …

Back in 1989, when the BMW 8 Series first debuted, it was only developed as a coupe. At the time, it was BMW’s most technologically-advanced car it had ever made, yet there was never a convertible model. Even though BMW sold the 8 Series for almost ten years, as it ended production in 1999, a drop-top model was never produced. So this new, second-generation BMW 8 Series Convertible is truly the first of its kind.

Not only is the new 8 Series Convertible the first of its kind but it’s also the best looking drop-top BMW since the Z8. It looks great, like a proper grand touring convertible. Even in M850i-guise, as seen in these photos, it looks more elegant than it does sporty, which is how a GT convertible is supposed to look. Being that convertibles are, by nature, less engaging to drive than their coupe siblings — due to the inherent lack of structural rigidity and added weight from losing a fixed roof in favor of a folding one — GT convertibles should be more about fast, elegant cruising than anything else. And this new 8er ‘Vert seems to look the part.

BMW 8 Series Convertible images 26 830x553

BMW 8 Series Convertible images 29 830x553

Without the roof, it’s low, sleek and muscular looking. Though, it’s not overly sport and that’s a good thing. With the roof up, it looks calm and sophisticated.

A lot of this elegance-over-sport look of the 8 Series Convertible has to do with the way it’s spec’d. Rather than having really aggressive wheels and sporty packages, BMW chose to give this 8 Series ‘Vert some classier wheels and a less aggressive spec. Which was a smart move by the Bavarians, as it makes this look like a proper GT convertible, something to contend with the Aston Martin DB11 Volante and Bentley Continental GT Convertible, even though the 8’er is significantly cheaper than both.

The soft top roof itself is insulated with multiple layers of fabric that are designed to keep noise and temperature out while its up. But when the elements change, that roof can be stowed or risen in just 15 seconds, at speeds up to 30 mph. With the roof down, a wind deflector can be placed behind the front seats (although its presence prevents rear passengers) and stowed in the trunk when not in use.

If you like to embrace the elements regardless of temperature as I do (who doesn’t love a convertible in the winter?), optional neck warmers — air vents integrated into the head rests — can keep passengers warm even in cold weather. And, if you happen to roll the 8 Series Convertible, high-strength aluminum roll bars deploy behind the passengers’ heads, via pyrotechnic charge.

Aside from the convertible top and the features that come with it, the 8 Series Convertible is essentially the same as the coupe version. So it still makes 523 hp and 553 lb-ft of torque from its 4.4 liter twin-turbocharged V8, still uses an eight-speed auto and still has xDrive all-wheel drive. So, mechanically, it’s basically the same car. Though, its slight extra weight gain does slow its 0-60 mph time to 3.8 seconds, rather than the Coupe’s 3.6 seconds. Still, that’s plenty quick.

This new BMW 8 Series Convertible is the first of its kind and it’s already making a good first impression. Not only is it a fast, luxurious convertible but it’s possibly the best looking convertible BMW has made in a very, very long time.

The market launch is scheduled for March 2019 with the M850i xDrive Convertible starting at an MSRP of $121,400 plus $995 Destination.

Specifications 2019 BMW M850i xDrive Convertible

BMW M850i xDrive

Seats

4

Number of Doors

2

Drive type

AWD

Length

inches

191.2

Width

inches

74.9

Width including mirrors

inches

84.1

Height

inches

53.0

Wheelbase

inches

111.1

Ground clearance

inches

5.0

Turning radius

feet

19.5

Shoulder width front

inches

57.2

Shoulder room rear

inches

45.7

Legroom front

inches

42.1

Legroom rear

inches

29.5

Headroom front

inches

38.9

Headroom rear

inches

34.7

Trunk volume (SAE)

ft³

12.4

Fuel Tank capacity

gallons

18.0

Curb weight

lbs.

4,736

Gross vehicle weight

lbs.

5,545

Payload

lbs.

772

Engine type

N63B44T3

Cylinders

8

Valves per cylinder

4

Stroke

mm

88.3

Bore

mm

89.0

Displacement

cm³

4,395

Compression rate

:1

10.5

Engine power

hp

523

at rpm

1/min

5,500 – 6,000

Engine torque

ft. lbs.

553

at rpm

1/min

1,800-4,600

Fuel type

gasoline

Recommended Fuel

AKI 91

Engine oil capacity

quarts

11.0

Output per liter

hp/liter

119.0

Transmission type

8HP76 Sport

Transmission type

automatic

Gear ratios 1st gear

5.50

2nd

3.52

3rd

2.20

4th

1.72

5th

1.32

6th

1.00

7th

0.82

8th

0.64

Reverse gear

-3.71

Final drive ratio

3.40

Power-steering type

EPS

Steering ratio

:1

16.3

Tires 20” front

245/35R20 95Y XL

Tires 20” rear

275/30R20 97Y XL

Wheels 20” front & rear

inches

8.0J x 20 / 9.0J x 20 LM

Track, front

inches

64.1

Rear, track

inches

64.6

Cx

0.32

0-60 mph

seconds

3.8

Top speed

mph

155

EPA Fuel Economy, city / hwy

mpg

TBD

NEWSLETTER