What is it?
This is the most expensive version of BMW’s most expensive car, the four-seat, drop-top M8 Competition packing 616bhp, the potential for a startlingly fast 3.4sec romp to 62mph and if you order the M Driver’s Package, a derestricted engine management system allowing a top speed of 190mph.
That figure probably lessens slightly with the generously insulated fabric roof folded below deck, but would feel at least as dramatic.
The M8 Competition shares many core ingredients with the M5 Competition, but there are plenty of chassis sharpening tweaks too. These include a 7mm lower ride height, a wider track, stiffened engine mountings (for sharper turn-in) and extra bracing of the front and rear subframes, these building on an already substantial arsenal of dynamic hardware which includes four-wheel drive, an electronically governed mechanical limited slip differential, traction control, ESP and a quartet of 20in Michelins, the rears fractionally plumper than the fronts.
That’s because larger slugs of torque can be directed rearwards depending on driving mode, the ultimate of these, rather thrillingly, turning the M8 into a pure rear-wheel drive machine, as with the M5.