I’ll never get annoyed of this acrylic color.
Earlier this year, I took the BMW M8 Antagonism for a spin, and while I was afflicted with its corner-carving prowess, I begin it absolutely too abundant car for best situations, and it sacrificed abounding of its grand-touring accreditation in favor of absolute performance. Now, afterwards a anniversary with the still-plenty-potent 2020 M850i, it’s bright that BMW’s big-body auto can be a able GT, alike if some genitalia of the acquaintance aren’t absolutely realized.
While the 8 Series is advised BMW’s flagship coupe, its exoteric architecture is decidedly restrained. Sure, my tester gussies things up with an absolutely absolute $5,500 Wildberry Metallic acrylic job and a $4,100 M Carbon Exoteric Amalgamation that adds abortive carbon cilia to assorted corners, but the all-embracing aesthetics are on the sedate side, with aloof a few aciculate edges advanced and aft and a accomplished agglomeration of accuracy amid those points. It’s a acceptable attending that won’t leave you talking about the car to every eyewitness — unless, of course, you get castigation in techno-purple.
I said this of the M8 Competition, and I’ll say it again: The 8 Series is big. This auto does a abundant job of burning up every accessible inch of burghal amid the chicken lines. While that’s acceptable in the faculty that it feels like you get your money’s account of car, there are some accessible downsides. Alike with 360 degrees of parking sensors, the arch bend is boss affected to parking berms, and alongside parking attempts leave me apprehensive if I’ve absent the adeptness to adjudicator what cars can fit in what spaces. If accession on the artery errs too abutting to the abject lines, I acquisition myself afraid a bit added than usual.
The interior, by comparison, feels abundant abate than the car to which it’s attached. Aback I accelerate into the driver’s bench — and I do beggarly slide, aback the M850i is somewhat low — things are a little cramped. The centermost adit all-overs appealing high, and the beltline isn’t ideal for arm-out-the-window jaunts either, arch to a slight faculty of claustrophobia. That activity is abstract in the back, which possesses seats and allowance in name only; unless your third commuter is a dog, a babyish or a grocery bag, you may appetite to bounce for the four-door Gran Auto if added than two bodies accept about to go.
While it ability feel constricted, BMW’s autogenous architecture is great. Extended Merino covering is standard, so about every distinct blow point is bland and able-bodied cushioned, and the seats accommodate both abounding abundance and abutment on best trips. The altitude ascendancy and radio buttons are arresting and accessible to ability afterwards distraction, but the wireless charging pad is tucked abroad abaft the cup holders, which can be catchy if you accompany drinks. Storage is… fine, I guess, with a ample block but diminutive aperture pockets and an appropriately bound centermost armrest cubby. Aloof bandy your old receipts assimilate the aback seats; at atomic they’ll be advantageous for article then.
The BMW M850i does a acceptable job of agreeable the aberration amid the absolute GT attributes of the 840i and the bonkers adequacy of the M8 Competition. The accepted adaptive abeyance provides absolute abundance in ample doses, assimilation up best every bit of alley carrion and replacing it with abiding cruising. Alley babble is far lower than the M8, lending to a added serene acquaintance on continued hauls. The Michelin Pilot Sport 3 run-flat tires (245/35 front, 275/30 rear) that blanket about 20-inch auto are thin, but they don’t advise abundant harshness, nor do they accomplish the absolute cacophony that the stickier elastic on the M8 Antagonism does, yet they are still affluence grippy aback the activity gets lateral.
Make no mistake, there is still affluence of ability on tap. The M850i packs a 4.4-liter, twin-turbocharged V8 that makes 523 application and 553 pound-feet of torque. That torque feels like it’s accessible as generally as an EV’s twist, with about every columnist of the pedal eliciting a ample advance advanced with few, if any, appropriate accessory changes. If I charge to shoot a gap on the highway? By the time I anticipate about it, it’s already over — and I’m already over the acceleration limit, to boot. Like the M8, the M850i’s powerplant gives me added motive force than I can anxiously use in 99% of real-life situations, which makes the aurally adorable bankrupt agenda a problem, as alert to it for too continued will end up with Smokey afire a aisle to my aback bumper.
The M850i’s council caster has aloof the appropriate bulk of block to it, and yes, the covering is actual nice.
The M850i’s modes are a bit added circuitous than the M8, which offers up a distinct awning absolution me adapt key genitalia of the alive acquaintance piecemeal. On the average adolescent here, there are absence modes like Abundance and Sport, with an Individual approach absolution me use any abject ambience as a belvedere for a hardly added tailored experience. Honestly, abrogation aggregate in Abundance still makes for a blood-tingling back-road blaster, with a bit added allowance for minute burke adjustments, and it’s my adopted way to drive the M850i, but Sport will acuminate things abundantly for those who adopt a touchier gas pedal. No bulk the mode, the electromechanical council has a abiding dosage of Novocain in its system, its asleep abusive from the alive experience. It’s still agile, but I don’t accept the activity that I appetite compared with, say, a 911.
Fuel economy, if you affliction about it at this price, isn’t great, but it’s bigger than the M8 Competition. The EPA estimates 18 afar per gallon burghal and 25 mpg highway, improvements of about 4 a pop over the sharper-edged car, and those numbers are thankfully accessible abundant to accomplish — provided you can avoid the siren song of connected low-end torque.
Anyone accustomed with the in-car technology in best added avant-garde BMWs won’t acquisition annihilation out of the accustomed on the M850i. The 10.2-inch touchscreen on the dashboard runs the latest abundance of BMW’s iDrive system, which is acknowledging and can be formed via the touchscreen or the concrete punch on the centermost console. A home awning offers quick glances at the best important bits, but you can override that with Apple CarPlay and, awaiting an over-the-air software update, Android Auto (finally). It’s not absolute by any stretch; some options are hidden several airheaded deep, and not all of them are amid sensibly, but in time iDrive becomes beef memory. The M850i additionally packs BMW’s action control, which is a confusing gimmick that usually after-effects in exceptionable song skips or aggregate changes if you’re a hand-talker. In accession to the wireless charger advanced of the cup holders, there’s additionally a USB-A anchorage up there, with a USB-C anchorage in the centermost armrest accommodation for faster juicing.
In accession to the iDrive screen, there’s additionally a 12.3-inch affectation acting as a barometer cluster. It looks abundantly futuristic, but it’s not my favorite. The abiding map is alone absolutely accessible aback turn-by-turn aeronautics is enabled, because it doesn’t affectation artery names, and the appropriate bisected of the array offers up aloof a few altered pieces of advice to display, so it’s not as feature-dense as it ability appear.
Care to assumption how abounding times my hand-talking accidentally triggered the action control? The acknowledgment is “too abuse many.”
Safety systems abound, provided there’s bread to go around. Automatic emergency braking is standard, but the acceptable being like BMW’s Alive Active Assistant Pro, which will let you adore bound bulk of hands-off time during low-speed (sub-37-mph) commutes in traffic, is hidden abaft options: $1,100 adds parking assist, a surround-view camera, lane-departure admonishing and alive blind-spot monitoring, while the abounding shebang additionally requires an $1,700 amalgamation on top of that. It’s a abundant arrangement at any speed, captivation the lane afterwards exceptionable movement, and the LED lights in the council caster accomplish it actual accessible aback a driver’s abounding absorption is warranted.
My tester’s $112,895 starting bulk balloons to $131,995 afterwards a few options, but I don’t appetite absurd adornment like carbon cilia trim central and out. My ideal M850i rocks the aforementioned $5,500 acrylic job, but I’d bandy to a no-charge copse trim central while absence over added artful doodads like my tester’s $3,000 carbon roof. Adding the $3,400 Bowers & Wilkins exceptional complete arrangement would be my sole splurge, awkward the window sticker at a added acceptable $121,795.
The 2020 BMW M850i is absolutely in the average of a ton of competition. If you appetite article a bit added lithe, the Porsche 911 is the absence go-to, and the Mercedes-AMG GT offers appropriate abundance in an alike added constricting wrapper. The Mercedes S-Class Auto errs added on the adequate side, as does the Lexus LC, which is added like a rolling art display than annihilation else. You could opt for the Maserati GranTurismo, I suppose, if you appetite a adorable attractive car that’s contrarily absolutely outclassed by every added name mentioned.
There’s annihilation amiss with absent the best of both worlds, which is what the BMW M850i embodies. It’s not as batty as the M8 Competition, but it’s not as focused on calmness as the 840i. The aftereffect is a able sports auto that has no botheration addition its legs and accepting adequate for continued alley trips.