BMW 8 Series Turns 25

Opinions vary on contemporary BMW styling, but few would argue that some of the automaker’s 1980s and 90s models are among the best ever produced. One of those, the BMW 8 Series, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year amid rumors the company is considering a new 8-Series model to take on Mercedes Benz’ S-Class Coupe, perhaps inspired by Pininfarina’s Gran Lusso Coupe.

BMW and its fans came together last weekend at the company’s Bavarian home for celebrating the 8 Series’ quarter-century, joining a parade of as many as 120 cars. The event was put together by the BMW 8-Series clubs and ClubE31 Worldwide Owners Group, with added support from BMW Club International Office. Fans and owners got to enjoy a tour of the Dingolfing facility, where the 8-Series was produced throughout the 1990s.

BMW 8 Series Turns 25

The BMW 8 Series offered plenty of new features to BMW’s range. Amongst its technical offerings include an electrically adjustable steering column with memory function, a seatbelt system incorporated into the seats, remote control central locking, a high performance onboard computer and an automatically dimming rearview mirror. The 8 Series, with its frameless windows, was also the first BMW to retract its windows slightly when the doors were opened, and raise them again as the doors shut—offering a tighter seal between door frame and window, enhancing refinement and silence inside the car.

Perhaps the BMW 8 Series’ greatest contribution though was its V12 powerplant. Visitors celebrating the vehicle’s 25th anniversary at Dingolfing got to see a special 8-Series prototype, its V12 tuned by BMW Motorsport to 550 HP. A development of this engine later went on to power one of the greatest ever supercars, the McLaren F1. If nothing else and there’s plenty about the 8 Series to like that contribution to the motoring world is something to be thankful for.

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