If one wants to define the future, they must study the past. This famous quote by the philosopher Confucius is probably at the back of every car designer’s mind.
Many people recognise the link between heritage, the present, and the future — and nowhere are these connections more visible than at an event such as the illustrious Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este at Lake Como in Italy. So obvious is this concept, that these days car makers use events such as Villa d’Este, Pebble Beach, and the Goodwood Festival of Speed to unveil concept cars and prototype models.
BMW revealed its new 8 Series concept, surrounded by the beautiful architecture of Villa Erba (the house next door to Villa d’Este, although we use the word “house” very loosely here). The 8 series sees the return of a badge, which disappeared in 1999, and its debut shows that while there might be lots of talk of downsizing and small, urban-friendly vehicles, there is still a big market for luxury and performance.