BMW 8-Series 840i Gran Coupé First Drive Review | Work Hard, Play Harder

8-Series 840i Gran Coupé

Imagine you have stepped out of a BMW showroom after taking a hard look at 7-series. Now I imagine that you just bought a 7 series, then by the time you are at the end of this review, you might want to slyly scratch your head because to put things in perspective the new 8-Series 840i Gran Coupé is only 18 lakhs away and has a badge that sits above the 7-series. It’s also a car that lies somewhere between saloons and coupes; moreover, it is the car that comes with actually usable rear seats and the added practicality of more space without compromising on style and is silently fun to drive—dotted lines to the Audi Rs7 Sportback.

BMW launched its first 8-Series cars back in 1990, and they’ve updated the models over a period, but the coupe and convertible body style options are timeless and let’s just say – elegant. The new 8-Series 840i Gran Coupé has a perfect structure like the iconic meticulously planned South Mumbai facades, with a precise amount of detail; a wide-low-slung stance coupled with a coupe-like slanted roofline, the front end with its widespread hood, brisk headlamps, and a kidney grille.

8-Series 840i Gran Coupé

Design and Exterior:

The 8-Series 840i Gran Coupé does catch your eye. Still, you won’t blink and rub your eyes in disbelief. It is a substantial 200.2 inches in length, nearly a foot longer than the 8-series coupe and convertible models and 3.0 inches longer than the previous 6-series Gran Coupe, and at a massive five meters plus, the 840i is incredibly long. It is 76 inches wide and 55 inches tall. These dimensions can help you imagine its road presence and stance. They even had to modify the BMW factory to take this rear track down; it’s so broad. Probably one of the broadest rear tracks on the BMWs. There’s so much detail in this car, and the energy just flows from the front to the rear, and from top to bottom. The 840i has a beautiful 20-inch MV spokes, jet-black styling, 728 m-performance wheels and a twin power turbo technology, a 3-litre, 6-cylinder engine that is pretty smooth and refined in everyday driving, and plenty powerful too, revving freely and emitting a superb sound. The turbocharged unit puts out 335hp and a muscular 500Nm of torque; Its wheelbase is 7.9 inches longer than the two-door 8’s, with that stretch devoted to improving space for rear passengers.

8-Series 840i Gran Coupé

Interior:

The 4-door format works nicely in the 8-series, it makes the 8-Series 840i Gran Coupé a beautiful looking car from the outside, but at the same time, its interiors are also fascinating and attractive. The 8-series’ interior looks quite different when you compare it to other BMWs due to its cascading console over here that seems separated from other interiors. Its dashboard is more swooping than the angular designs found in the Audi A7 Sportback and Porsche Panamera while being less vivid than that of the Mercedes CLS. The dashboard’s buttons are easy to notice and approach, you get configurable digital dials, and there’s a head-up display, which beams plenty of information into your sightline. The 840i is agile, and its steering has the right amount of heft, but it never really says what’s happening between the four tires and the road. There’s just none of the communication that older BMWs used to offer in spades. That’s missing.

8-Series 840i Gran Coupé

It has a high-mounted 10.25-inch touchscreen; we do have wireless Apple CarPlay. We still have the rotary controls down here, beautiful glass finishing on the iDrive and the gear shifter technology is cool, and it all feels suitably luxurious. Every Gran Coupe features a Harman/Kardon audio system, several charging ports, and subscription-based services such as SiriusXM satellite radio and a Wi-Fi hotspot. Android Auto is still noticeably absent. The 8-series gets all the latest features that have made their way to newer BMWs, including voice control, gesture control for answering/ rejecting phone calls, changing volume levels. But I am still scratching my head as to why they forgot to package Android Auto in it!