BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe M Sport
BMW’s 6 Series Gran Coupe is very much a wake-up call for the competition, as reported by our revered Kapitän at the recent international launch; http://www.itsgotwheels.com/bmw-6-series-gran-coupe-review/
However, in the interests of, ahem, fitness for purpose and thoroughness we thought we should take the opportunity to take this 313bhp, Bavarian wagon for a pan-European jaunt, which is just the sort of journey its name implies.
Our incarnation is the 3.0-litre 640d M Sport that sets its stall out at £68,565, but if you opt for the plethora of goodies fitted to our test car the gavel will bang down at £85,030, some £16,465 over the base price. Eye watering for some, but many of BMW’s target market will have this sort of money lying around in the ashtray on their Parnian desktop.
BMW design boss Dr Karim Habib’s styling efforts cannot fail to impress with this soigné smoothy. Sculpted to within an inch of its life, the body is 113mm longer and 23mm higher than the two door sister Coupe. It’s a piece of art that takes the beauty crown over the CLS, Panamera and Quattroporte in our humble art critic’s opinion.
You need no more proof of the Gran Coupe’s success than the admiring glances and open mouths of other road users on this trip. Passers-by’s eyes devour it just as quickly as it gobbles up 0-62mph in 5.4 seconds, before sprinting to a maximum of 155mph.
One admirer, a chippie en route from Geneva to Blighty enquired after economy. When informed it was a diesel, he reacted with disappointment and to the uninitiated why would you get excited about a 3.0-litre oil burner? Surely shome mishtake? Er, no, the 24 valve wondermonger delivers the goods with an acoustic full of rorty menace that induces grins with every blip of the throttle. Our strop across Europe was only 400 miles in and I was happy to note a remarkable 34.0mpg was offered up by the on-board computer display.
Settling into the Gran Coupe on this drive, I could see BMW has set about the interior with panache and conviction. The driving position is infinitely adjustable and the seats are swathed in leather as standard. A sleek, sweeping cockpit for the driver, Alacantara headlining, sunroof, ceramic finish for controls, head-up display and piano-black interior trim are some of the optional fine brush strokes that help create the masterpiece this car is.
In fact, the most beneficial option to the driving experience is the head up display that can be tweaked to offer up a variety of information. For us the speed limit, current speed (stellar… ) and next instruction on the sat-nav were the ones to exploit as once you get a lick on you really don’t want to be doing anything else than focussing on the job in hand.
While the two-door coupe has been criticised for not being a true four-seater, the Gran Coupe delivers the goods and even offers a nominal fifth seat. Like the Coupe, the Gran is equally at home on mountain hairpins as it is munching the Munich miles. Dial in to the Eco Comfort+, Comfort, Sport or Sport+ modes that do make a difference and you can eat up vast distances with the drive tailored to your preferences and with economy equivalent to a diesel hatch’s.
Paddling through the silky smooth eight-speed box, assisted by this towering diesel powerplant, the Gran Coupe has a level of grip and dexterity a car of this size has no right to deliver. It’s served up in a sublime luxury package and you are likely to cross Europe, fill it up and want to drive it straight back again.
However, buyer beware: the performance and refinement of the six-cylinder makes a strong case for raising the speed limit to 120mph. I kid you not, you are advised to pay attention as a momentary lapse of concentration is liable to leave you bereft of your licence.
The BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe, from Strasbourg to Deutschland to the battered roads of the UK, delivers performance, agility and elegance. It’s a master piece and masterclass in equal measure that leaves us wondering why any grown-up would consider either the competition or, for that matter, an M5.
Words: Martin Justice
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