The Resurrection Of A Supercar – The BMW 850i

It’s back! For those car enthusiasts who remember the first incarnation of the BMW 850i, prepare for its return. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this iconic supercar, now comes a chance for you to become an aficionado, too.

Credit: BMW

Before discussing the new version, let’s go back in history to find out why the original 8 Series was such a coveted car.

First introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1989, the BMW 850i aka the E31, epitomized power. A 5.0-liter, 12-cylinder engine that powered the car generated 300-horsepower and 332-lb-ft of torque and raced from 0-60 mph in just 6.8-seconds despite the fact that its top speed was electronically inhibited to 155-mph.

Of course, it was power that attracted its fans, but it was also its sleek appearance. BMW was determined to develop a car with a silhouette that had a drag coefficient of less than 0.3. To ensure that this goal was achieved, engineers designed into the body aerodynamic door mirrors, recessed wipers, and tighter than tight seals on the side windows. All of this helped the car exceed the goal and reach a drag coefficient of just 0.29.

In addition, the car simply looked hot due to pop-up headlights and the lack of a B-pillar. Ease of control was not neglected. After all it was a BMW. So the car included speed-sensitive power steering and dynamic stability control. Of course, comfort was built in with an electrically adjustable steering column with memory function, remote central locking, auto dimming rearview mirror, two computers, and a mobile phone situated between the front seats.

Obviously, the car lit a fire. In just one day more than a week after the Frankfurt show, BMW was swamped with 5,000 orders. By the end of the summer of 1990 every single one of the 12,000 units produced for the model year were sold.  The manufacturer was unable to meet the demand for more cars until 1993.

However, there were problems that led to the car’s discontinuation. First, it was expensive. Second, it was heavy at 1,790kg, and powered by a 12-cylinder engine at the beginning of a financial depression didn’t help matters much either.

The new incarnation of the 8 series will not disappoint car enthusiasts who were originally attracted to the vehicle and it certainly will not fall short of the expectations of enthusiasts who were previously not aware of the early incarnation.

A 268 cubic inch, 4395 cc twin-turbocharged, intercooled DOHC 32-valve, direct fuel injection, V-8 engine powers the 2019 BMW 850i. The engine features an aluminum block and heads. It generates 523-horsepower at 6000 rpm and 553-lb.-ft. of torque at 1800 rpm.

Fans of the original 850i should be thrilled that its performance meets if not exceeds expectations — 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds, 0-100 mph in 8.8 seconds, standing quarter mile in 12-seconds and a top speed of 155 mph.

Credit: BMW

Of course, no one would expect the vehicle to have an EPA fuel economy in the range of a Toyota Corolla, but it is more than acceptable when compared to other large engine vehicles. It achieves 19 mpg combined, 16 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway.

The front-engine, all-wheel-drive, four passenger, two-door coupe includes an 8-speed automatic transmission with manual shifting mode.

Credit: BMW

Manufacturer’s suggested retail base price of the vehicle is $112,895.

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