Just launched on the European market, the new BMW 8 Series already offers us a glimpse at BMW Individual customisation options. For over 25 years, the BMW Individual Manufaktur customisation facility in Garching near Munich has been producing exceptionally high-quality equipment features, extraordinary special-edition models and spectacular one-offs.
BMW Individual M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky is the name of the car and some of its applications are made from meteoritic material grace selected controls. Human fascination with the infinite vastness of the universe is also mirrored in the illuminated constellations of stars on the centre console and in the surface design of the luxury sports car’s trim finishers, seat backrests, brake discs and exterior add-on parts, which draws inspiration from celestial bodies.
The BMW Individual M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky was presented in the run-up to an exceptionally intense meteor shower that took place overnight from 3 – 4 January 2019. On rare occasions, smaller rocks in space penetrate our planet’s protective shield and fall to Earth as meteorites. Some of these extra-terrestrial fragments have now been incorporated into the cabin of the BMW Individual M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky.
Expanding on the use of meteoritic material for the controls inside the sports car, the design of many other interior and exterior elements takes its cues from a structure that only occurs in natural form on extra-terrestrial objects: the distinctive Widmanstätten surface pattern of meteorites.
The structure is the result of the metal alloy cooling down in an extremely slow process that cannot be reproduced on Earth, making it an unmistakable signature of extra-terrestrial material. The unique pattern was first observed back in the early 19th century by a number of people, including the Austrian scientist Alois von Beckh Widmanstätten, after whom it is named.
The same innovative additive manufacturing process is employed for making the brake callipers. Here, 3D printing techniques take intelligent lightweight design to a new level. The aluminium brake callipers with bionic design fitted on the BMW Individual M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky were developed by BMW Motorsport and are up to 30 per cent lighter than components produced using conventional methods.
BMW Individual fine-grain Merino leather trim in tri-colour design and the Opal White/Midnight Blue/Silver colour scheme constitute another first for interior styling. The Widmanstätten structure – a defining feature of the BMW Individual M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky interior – is repeated in the stitching pattern for the seat centre sections.
The centre console armrests add another touch of brilliance, their special design inspired by the glittering heavens at night. LED units are used to illuminate their surfaces, producing the effect of a star-studded sky and giving the luxury sports car’s cabin a richly atmospheric feel. Deep-pile carpeting in Midnight Blue puts the finishing touches to the stylish interior ambience.
The exterior paintwork of the BMW Individual M850i xDrive Coupe Night Sky adds to its captivating aura. The BMW Individual special paint finish deftly combines two colour tones to achieve a high-impact effect. Black non-metallic was used as the base colour for the body. A second coat in San Marino Blue metallic was then painted over it in a graduated effect from the bottom edge of the body up to the top of the wheel arches. Finally, three layers of clear coat with varying pigment particle sizes were applied to give the paint finish a remarkable sense of depth.