2019 BMW M850i: First Drive

After nearly 20 years the 8 series badge lives again. 

Styling

To start with, the “Dravit Grey Metallic” is fantastic. Every angle of light gives it a different shades of golds, blues, and greys. It also fits the angles of the gorgeous M850i perfect.The long hood blends into a gorgeous side profile and the abrupt but well proportioned rear. You cannot go wrong with either one of the two wheel choices available either. I personally like the 20” Style 728M over the more busy but classier Style 729M but both are a great choice depending on your opinion. One of the reasons I asked for this car in particular was to be used as a getaway car for a couple of my wife and I’s friends as we would drive them downtown Nashville after their wedding. Other than a cramped backseat, the car performed perfect;y, mastering the stately presence they wanted on their big day.

2019 BMW M850i

Interior

The combination of the light interior and dropping roof made for one of the more pleasant relaxed driving experiences I have. Who cares about traffic when your in something as amazing as this BMW? The amazing Burmeister radio with wireless(that’s right, no cord at all) Apple Carplay was an added bonus to the general aura of driving the “Ultimate Driving Machine”. Something that gets forgotten when testing convertibles is actually the top operation itself. In the past, I enjoyed the simple manual top on the Miata, being able to retract in mere seconds at whatever speed you could grab it at. This is easily the next best thing. The M850i automatic movement happens in just 15 seconds and can be controlled at up to 30mph. This is a huge step meaning the chance of you being stuck at a light or driving down the road with your top halfway up stuck because of speed is nearly impossible. 

2019 BMW M850i

Handling

The M850i is a big car. Just in terms of length, it is over two and a half inches longer than a 2019 four door Jeep JL. Weight wise, it’s actually heavier than the BMW 750Li at 4,738lbs. FOur wheel steering and dynamic suspension try to hide all this mass but the M850i is not the canyon carving, Dragon slaying car some think it might be. It acts like a Grand Touring car, perfect for around the town and country and that is what people should expect.

2019 BMW M850i

Powertrain

One of the most sinister parts of this BMW is what it is packing under the hood. Even with all that weight, you would expect something like this to still move pretty good and move pretty good is exactly what it does. The 4.4L Twin Turbo V8 comes to the table with 523 horsepower and 553 earth moving foot pounds of torque. This combo blast the heavy convertible to 60 in just 3.8 seconds. That is incredibly quick, especially with the top down. Blasting down the roadway at breakneck speeds is just about too easy. The eight speed transmission is extremely responsive and provides the big convertible BMWs best trick. The engine noise. When driving around town, throw the exhaust into “Sport Plus” mode and the big V8 exhaust starts cracking and snarling in a sound even the dead would wake too. Juevelie? Yes. But intoxicating is putting it lightly.

2019 BMW M850i

Verdict

To start with, the only real competitor to the BMW M850i is the Lexus LC500 and while it is not quite as high performing, it is quite a bit cheaper. Also, while the M850i looks great, the LC500 is even prettier. I am interested to see how the two compare and luckily, I juuuust might have one coming here very soon. As far as the BMW itself, the 2019 BMW M850i is $123,450 and it is really easy to see why. It does not seem to know if it wants to be a muscle car, sports car, or GT car but that’s part of what makes it the absolute riot it is. It was a joy to be in the car and it made people smile everywhere I went. It had the beauty and the noise that makes it  a really good automobile and a glimpse of what BMW has to come. M8, I’m looking at you.

Bonus Pics

2019 BMW M850i
2019 BMW M850i
2019 BMW M850i
2019 BMW M850i