It has the RS7 Sportback, Panamera Turbo, and AMG GT 63 in its sights.

The BMW M5 ticks all the right boxes in our book as it offers the complete package by combining a ridiculous amount of power with the sportiness you’d want from a BMW all wrapped up in a luxurious and fairly practical midsize saloon. For those willing to pay the premium commanded by something even more exciting, the Bavarians will be more than happy to sell them this – the M8 Gran Coupe.

Nearly a year after debuting the namesake concept (pictured at the end) at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, BMW has been spotted out in the open testing the road-going car. It appears we are looking at a near-production prototype with most of the final bits while carrying a generous amount of camouflage to hide the swoopy saloon’s sensual lines. The quad exhaust tips are a telltale sign this is something more exciting than the M850i, while the lowered sports suspension makes the car look as if it’s glued to the road.

Gallery: BMW M8 Gran Coupe spy photos

Despite the disguise, BMW was kind enough to leave a good chunk of the front bumper exposed to show the menacing air intakes. You’ll be happy to hear the kidney grille is not nearly as big as what the X7 and 7 Series facelift have, and is a perfect size for the M6 Gran Coupe’s direct replacement. We’ve already spotted the M8 Coupe and M8 Convertible, so the design of their more practical sibling does not come as a big surprise. We do notice a somewhat subtle boot lid spoiler just to let everyone know this isn’t an “ordinary” 8 Series – as if there even is such a thing.

In the power department, we’re expecting the twin-turbo 4.4-litre V8 engine to deliver just about the same level of muscle as the M5 and the hotter M5 Competition. In other words, up to 617 bhp should be on the agenda, if not a bit more considering the M8 Gran Coupe will be placed at the very top of the M hierarchy.

Expect the two-door models to debut in the following months, with the roomier variant to arrive either by the end of the year or early 2020.

Photos: CarPix

Gallery: BMW Concept M8 Gran Coupe at the 2018 Geneva motor show