Back in August 2020, BMW took everyone by surprise when it showed up at the Nürburgring with an ultra-aggressive prototype of the M8. It didn’t take too long for some to speculate the prototype portrayed a CSL version. It returned to the Green Hell in the first half of 2021 when a spokesperson told Motor1.com the speedy coupe was testing accessories and racing parts.
Fast forward to March 2023, the mean-looking M8 has returned. A new spy video shot at the Nordschleife in Germany shows the beastly coupe with red daytime running lights and a large rear wing. It also happens to have more carbon fiber than we’ve ever seen before on an M8, but there’s another detail that caught our attention.
Those vents in the quarter glass indicate a mid-engined layout. The fact BMW blacked out the side windows and the rear glass leads us to believe it’s trying to hide something. Could there be an engine where the rear seats are in a regular M8? We don’t know. Whatever the case may be, the car seems to have a brawny V8 judging by the soundtrack.
Assuming it’s not a test mule of a mid-engined supercar, it could be a testbed for a V8-related powertrain. Maybe the M division is tweaking the S68 for future applications, with the next-gen M5 confirmed to get the new twin-turbo, 4.4-liter V8 of the XM. On the other hand, the G90 has already been spied undergoing testing, so we might be dealing with something else here.
Rumor has it the 8 Series Coupe and Convertible will be dropped after this generation, with only the Gran Coupe to survive as an EV. Maybe BMW is preparing a last hurrah for the ICE-powered 8er? This spy video raises more questions than answers. Perhaps we may be getting ahead of ourselves, and the prototype is being used to test race car parts as stated by a company spokesperson a couple of years ago.
Source: Carspotter Jeroen / YouTube