BMW has confirmed its upcoming M8 coupé will be powered by a “high-revving” V8 generating more than 440 kW when it hits the market "in the course of 2019".

For context, note that the M5's 4,4-litre V8 is worth 441 kW, while the M5 Competition boasts 460 kW. The M850i, meanwhile, offers 390 kW.

The eight-cylinder engine in the M8 has its pair of turbochargers positioned in the “V” between the banks of cylinders. An eight-speed M Steptronic transmission will ship standard, while an electronically controlled flap will be included in the dual-branch exhaust system, which culminates in twin tailpipes at either end of the rear apron.

The Munich-based automaker says the powerplant transfers its considerable oomph to the tarmac via a new version of the M xDrive all-wheel-drive system “tuned specifically for the M8”. Yes, that means it will offer what BMW describes as an “agile, rear-wheel-biased set-up”.

Depending on the chosen mode, the all-wheel-drive system will be able to “open the door to controlled drifts”, while switching off the dynamic stability control system brings 2WD mode into play. According to BMW, the latter turns the M8 into “an outright rear-wheel-drive machine, liberated from the shackles of control systems and free to lay on a driving experience of absolute purity”. Fighting words.

The M8 will feature a “fundamentally reworked” double-wishbone front axle/five-link rear axle chassis, along with an increase in track width. Electronically controlled dampers will also be included as standard, as will M compound brakes (with 395 mm discs up front and 380 mm items at the rear). Naturally, optional M carbon-ceramic brakes will also be available.

The new M8 will ride on 19-inch M light-alloy wheels (20-inch versions will also be offered) wrapped in mixed-size “ultra-high-performance” tyres.

Interestingly, BMW has also confirmed it is currently also developing an M8 Convertible and M8 Gran Coupé...