The BMW i8 if it were designed as a luxury coupe instead of a goofy hybrid
Defining characteristics: Low profile, sleek roofline
Ridiculous features: Deep-spoke steering wheel with red anodized paddle shifters
Chance of being mass-produced: 100 percent; the 8 Series coupe goes on sale in 2018
BMW's Concept 8 Series coupe is a thinly disguised version of what the reborn 8 Series will look like. BMW quietly discontinued its sleek 6 Series coupe earlier this year, and an 8 Series takes its place and steps it up a notch as a flagship coupe to complement the 7 Series and compete with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class coupe. When it was last around in the '90s, the 8 Series was the pinnacle coupe in BMW's lineup.
Related: BMW Confirms Return of 8 Series Coupe
"The forthcoming BMW 8 Series coupe will demonstrate that razor-sharp dynamics and modern luxury can go hand in hand. This will be the next model in the expansion of our luxury car offering and will raise the benchmark for coupes in the segment. In the process, we will strengthen our claim to leadership in the luxury class," said Harald Krueger, BMW chairman of the board of management, in a statement.
BMW is intent on the 8 Series being a driver's car, and this concept is rear-wheel drive with flared wheel arches that BMW says hints at the car's dynamics. Even though BMW calls it a driver's car with unadulterated dynamics and next-level luxuriousness, these two attributes don't necessarily go hand in hand — and often tug in opposite directions. We'll be curious to see specifics on how BMW intends to have them coexist. Pieces of the puzzle, of course, will come with more information as the concept evolves into a production car.
In design, the Concept 8 Series flaunts performance and luxury with a carbon-fiber diffuser on a body finished in iridescent paint. Up front, the headlights are lasers and the twin-kidney grille is especially low to the ground for a wild look. Inside, the seats consist of a carbon-fiber shell covered in high-end leather.
BMW will introduce a production 8 Series in 2018.