BMW 8-Series to return with new 850i?

BMW is considering building a four-door "coupe" to compete with the Mercedes CLS-Class, according to a new report by German magazine Auto Zeitung. The vehicle would likely revive the 8-Series designation, starting with a new 850i.

BMW offered an 8-Series in the 1990s, with the V12 850Ci delivering 326 horsepower. A less expensive 840i delivered 286 hp. While V12 power is not a certainty for a new 8-Series, BMW does have a V12 engine from its 760i sedan at its disposal. The company also has its M division V10 available, as well as a range of V8s. The Auto Zeitung report suggests the first model would be an 850i, which means BMW is likely to use its V8 powerplant from the 550i and 650i in the base model.

[See the full Auto Zeitung illustration here].

Conflicting reports

In June 2006, Germany's Auto Bild ran a cover story on BMW's planned rival to the Mercedes CLS. At the time, we at Leftlane speculated it might signal the revival of the 8-Series.

The magazine later reported that the vehicle was in fact the next-generation 6-series, which it says will be offered in two- and four-door variants under the same nameplate.