It’s that time of the year when BMW proposes a new attractive wallpaper for your computer. After the Touring Coupe that graced the 2023 Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, this year’s show hosts the world premiere of an equally stunning one-off. Say hello to Skytop, a reinvention of the 8 Series Convertible after completely changing the body.

To be fair, BMW doesn’t say it’s based on the G14 but the familiar interior betrays the car’s true identity. Although the Skytop’s bones are familiar, its skin is totally new. The fully redesigned body represents a significant departure from the current design language. The team that penned these smooth and clean lines had complete freedom to overhaul the droptop 8er. Not that the regular model isn’t an attractive car but the concept is drop-dead gorgeous.

The front fascia reminds us of the Sharknose era but with an illuminated grille because it’s 2024 and apparently most BMWs must have light-up kidneys. That elongated hood boasts a central spine reminiscent of the Z8, which also influenced the slim rear lights. The designers also took inspiration from the 503, a 2+2 grand tourer sold during the late 1950s.

The 8 Series Convertible has lost its electrically retractable fabric roof in favor of a removable two-piece targa top. When not in use, the leather-wrapped panels are stored in the cargo compartment. BMW installs a flat rear window that slides down to enhance the open-air feel. Although a concept, Skytop even has a roll-over bar, draped in leather.

The shapely Skytop rides on turbine-styled wheels and ditches conventional door handles to enhance the profile’s sleekness. Instead, BMW incorporated tiny winglets into the beltline. Interestingly, the concept has fullsize mirrors rather than side cameras that would’ve cleaned up the silhouette even more. At the rear, the oval exhaust tips fully integrated into the bumper are rather unexpected.

The reddish-brown cabin eschews the rear seats while keeping the old iDrive 7 layout. There are still plenty of conventional buttons since the G14 is among the last BMWs with a previous-generation infotainment. That’s not necessarily a bad thing since some of us prefer having physical controls instead of fumbling through a touchscreen.

Powered by a 4.4 Liter V8

As to what lies underneath the imposingly long hood, it’s an eight-cylinder engine. Not just any V8, but the most powerful to ever come from Bavaria. BMW doesn’t mention its identity but the most potent of the lot is the S63 installed in the M5 CS. The super sedan had 626 horsepower from its twin-turbo 4.4-liter. The regular M8 Convertible is nearly as strong, at 617 hp. Although the XM Label is BMW’s most powerful production vehicle to date, its S68 combustion engine is rated at a lower 577 hp.

Is it going into production?

As always with concepts that have premiered at Villa d’Este, BMW doesn’t say anything about putting Skytop into production. It does look suspiciously ready to get the green light since concepts usually have wacky traits. This one doesn’t. It even has a front tow hook cap and windshield wipers, along with red reflectors plus those normal-sized mirrors we mentioned. The interior is essentially a spruced-up 8 Series/M8 Convertible with two fewer seats.

We’ll be asking left and right whether BMW has any intentions of selling Skytop to customers. If it does happen, expect a high price tag and a low production number. It wouldn’t come as a total surprise since the 3.0 CSL followed a similar recipe.

BMW Design Sketches

BMW Concept Skytop