2019 BMW M850i xDrive Review | carsales

2019 BMW M850i xDrive Review | carsales


With an increasing number of affordable entry
models you could argue the BMW is on the shopping list of more Aussie buyers than ever before. But the German carmaker clearly hasn’t forgotten
how to do a luxury flagship and this car is proof. The all-new 8 series. The 8 series returns to the BMW fold after
a 20 year hiatus. Topping the carmakers line-up in Australia
solely in one 850i derivative. Available in coupe or convertible styles the
850i has just as many bells and whistles as the original 8 series from the 90s. But it is priced as such. 272,000 for the coupe and 281,000 for the
convertible. The features list would want to be fairly
special at that price point and the 8 series certainly doesn’t disappoint with a carbon
fibre roof and inner transmission tunnel, laser headlights that can project light 500
metres ahead on high beam, and a night vision assistant that detects pedestrians and animals
in the dark. Stepping inside the cabin presents a similar
prestige vibe. Glass appointments, a high-end sound system,
immersive displays, and real leather. But what really distinguishes the 8 series
from lesser BMW’s is what’s under the bonnet. A twin turbo v8 that speaks to all classes. The headline figures here are 390 kilowatts
and 750 newton metres. It equates to a nought to 100 time of just
three point seven seconds. But there is a bigger story here to tell. The eight-speed automatic is brilliant with
the way that it combines the entire drive train together and I really like just how
effortless and how much surge there is from that v8 down low. It really buys into the luxury experience
and being honest it sounds pretty good too. The driving experience is a rich and refined
one. Along with the switch shifting eight-speed
auto there is technology at every corner working benignly to mitigate the 850i’s two ton
curb weight. Four-wheel drive, four-wheel steer, active
anti-roll bars and variable ratio steering to name a few. Now when you piece all of those elements together
there is a slightly digitised veneer to the 8 series but that’s not necessarily a bad
thing on a winding country road. For a big car, it feels like the 8 series
has so much in reserve. In fact more in reserve than what an ordinary
driver would. It sits flat through corners and there’s
a nice level of feeling and engagement at all the key controls. In fact I’d go as far as saying I don’t
think this car would be out of its depth on a race circuit. It’s proficient and everything works. For a luxury car it’s really quite well-rounded. On the comfort scale, the 8 series truly backs
up its performance with heated seats, door sleeves, centre console and steering wheel
and a closeting adaptive suspension set up. Safety is likewise befitting of a flagship
employing BMW’s latest active and passive systems. The equipment all adds up to deliver the consummate
luxury experience and unlike lesser luxury cars you won’t see one of these on every
block.

About the Author: Michael Flood

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