In-depth reviews

BMW 8 Series review - Practicality, comfort and boot space

The 8 Series has a large boot, but if you prioritise practicality then you'll need the four-door Gran Coupe model

If you can handle its overall size – the 8 Series is longer than some SUVS – this is a practical grand touring machine for two passengers. It’s nominally a four-seater, but humans with legs will not enjoy attempting to access the rear seats. Up front there are plenty of practical touches though, with twin cup-holders, a big glovebox and decently-sized door pockets. In spite of the car’s dimensions, practicality is helped by automatic parking assistance and all-round parking sensors and cameras.

The Grand Coupe model is almost as long as the executive 7 Series, and so offers more practicality and space for passengers to travel in comfort.

Size

At 4,843mm long and 1,902mm wide, there’s no doubt the 8 Series takes up lots of space in the garage. From a size perspective it splits the difference between a Mercedes S-Class Coupe and the Aston Martin DB11. The Porsche 911 is noticeably smaller at 4,499mm x 1,808mm, and the Mercedes AMG GT is shorter but wider than the BMW at 4,546mm x 1,939mm.

The extended wheelbase of the Grand Coupe means overall length comes in at over 5 metres, while it's also slightly taller.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

Nobody will complain about the passenger space in the front seats. You sit quite low and there’s a cosy feel thanks to the broad transmission tunnel, but there’s plenty of leg, elbow and headroom. The seats are supremely comfortable and supportive, and there’s plenty of adjustment in both the seats and the steering wheel.

The situation in the back couldn’t be more different. There’s virtually no legroom at all, even for children, and the car’s swoopy roofline means headroom is also severely compromised.

Rear access in the Gran Coupe is much improved over the standard two-door model. Two rear passengers can sit in complete comfort, while there is a middle seat for use on shorter journeys.

Boot

The BMW 8 Series boot is definitely a good size, and with 420-litres of luggage space it outdoes some family hatchbacks. True, the shape of the boot lid and opening means it’s not the most practical space to access, but for the luxury coupe class, it’s not too bad.

You even get 50:50 split-fold rear seats that are operated from inside the boot when you need more space. The boot lid is power assisted for hands-free operation, too.

The Gran Coupe offers an extra 20 litres of boot space, while the rear seats split in a 40:20:40 arrangement for increased practicality.

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