The 8 series was the first road car to feature a V12 paired with a 6spd manual. The 5.0L V12 came from the 750iL
In addition, the 8 Series was one of the first production cars to use drive-by-wire throttle operation. It was also the first model (along with the Z1) to feature BMW’s new multi-link rear axle
The 8 series was an entirely new model designed from scratch, designed to exceed the E24 6 series in every measurable way. When development started in 1981, there were disputes on whether or not consumers would pay nearly $80k for an all-new series model in 1991. For perspective, the base price of a 1981 635CSi was around $40k – and this was one of BMW’s most expensive cars at the time
Developing the 8 series cost BMW over 1.5 billion Deutsche Mark thanks to the use of highly advanced CAD software and tooling (very few cars in the 80’s were born from CAD technology). Wind tunnel testing allowed for a 0.29 drag coefficient- far superior to the E24 6 series (.39). The E24 6 series was used as a test bed for most of the 8 series development
The 8 series used some of the most advanced pop-up headlights ever featured on a car – each headlight assembly includes low beams, high beams and fog lights
The 850i was the first production car to utilize a CAN (Controller Area Network). This substantially reduced the number of wires throughout the car, reducing weight and complexity
An M8 was in the works, but world events such as the global recession (early ’90s), the Persian Gulf War, and energy price hikes meant that 8 series sales were dismal. BMW could not justify production of a 550 V12 sports car, which shared most of its engine parts with the McLaren F1
Instead, BMW offered a limited production high performance variant called the 850CSi, which was only available with a manual transmission. The engine in this car (code named S70B56) was also related to the engine in the McLaren F1 (code named S70/2) which owned the title as the fastest production car in the world (248 mph). This engine was so complex that it required two engine computers to run (one for each bank)
Key Model Year Changes:
First year of the 8 series (E31)
The following year (1992) saw an updated Electronic Damping Control system that provided a more pronounced differentiation between Sport and Comfort mode. A gearshift interlock was added to the automatic transmission to prevent shifting out of park unless the brake pedal was pressed. The tips of the wiper and turn-signal stalks can now control the in-car phone
The name changes to “850Ci” in 1993 – the C is to emphasize the Coupe body style
The V8 model didn’t arrive until 1994 (840Ci) which shared the M62 V8 from the 540i
Also in 1994, the engine is upgraded to the larger 5.4L M73 (replacing the 5.0 M70). Power output increases to 322hp
Production ends in 1997
66k original miles
Calypso Red Metallic
BMW Telephone option
Very good condition
Runs and drives great
A/C blows cool
Wheels have no curbing
Some minor modifications to make it more reliable including aluminum radiator and expansion tank
It is an older car and has some small things that need attention but overall is very nice
Location: Tampa Bay, Florida – (more photos below)
*SAE rated from factory. May not reflect current output.
*Performance numbers pulled from either the factory brochure or reputable automotive road tests.
*Base price when new does not reflect original MSRP of this particular car, nor does it reflect what the original owner paid for it.
*Advertised price at time of posting. Sellers can raise or lower prices on their original ad at any time. Click on the original ad to view current price/availability.
Mileage Disclaimer: NOC has not confirmed if the mileage stated by the seller is true and accurate. It is up to the buyer to verify these claims. Vehicle history reports, service records stating mileage, and even inspections of odometer tampering are recommended.