The X8 M will reportedly have a hybrid powertrain good for a combined 750 hp.
A couple of weeks ago, we reported on BMW's move to trademark the name "X8 M," providing the most concrete proof yet that not only is the Bavarian premium car manufacturer planning to give the 8-Series the crossover treatment, but that a high-performance M-badged variant is also in the works.
Now, a report from the UK's CAR Magazine asserts that the BMW X8 M will be the most powerful M car yet when it launches for 2022, with up to 750 horsepower in its most extreme plug-in-hybrid incarnation. Given the sales success BMW has enjoyed with its strategy to crossover-ify all its models, we have to acknowledge the unconfirmed claims as plausible.
That 750 horsepower of thrust will come courtesy of a gasoline V8 and a 200-horsepower electric motor, CAR claims, for a total peak torque output of 737 lb-ft, and it will reportedly ride on BMW's modular new CLAR (CLuster ARchitecture) platform. That platform can support both rear- and all-wheel drive, and it's already proven its usability in hybrid applications.
But unlike many hybrids, the BMW X8 M isn't anticipated to be a tree-hugging fuel-sipper. The vehicle, which is reportedly being referred to internally as "Project: Rockstar," will borrow its fifth-generation electric motor technology from the pure-electric BMW iNext crossover, but not necessarily its efficient, environmental aims.
The BMW X8 M is expected to launch late in 2021 as a 2022 model, shortly after the non-M BMW X8. Both models are expected to rock a sloping, coupe-like side profile akin to those of the X4 and X6, sacrificing a bit of cargo capacity and headroom in the name of style.
Otherwise, the X8 and X8 M will be dimensionally similar to the BMW X7, which just launched for the 2019 model year. That model line still doesn't have a full-fledged M variant, but it's believed that such a model will arrive soon enough.