BMW’s 6 Series Gran Coupe


I’ve always been a fan of compromise. Especially when it comes to cars. That fire-truck-red Ferrari may be an osteopathic nightmare to get in and out of, but boy does it look gorgeous.

   That’s why I’ve already fallen for the stunning new BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe that’ll be heading our way this summer.

BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe - Howard Walker - The Wheel World

   It’s the latest in the growing klatch of four-door coupes. Mercedes-Benz kicked off the genre with the ground-breaking CLS. Volkswagen followed up with the sexy CC. And Audi recently perfected the style with the drop-dead gorgeous A7.

   Why a compromise? Because you take a perfectly good sedan and give it the swoopy, ski-slope-like back end of a sports coupe. That usually means so-so rear-seat headroom, entry and exit that’s more like a lesson in limbo-dancing, and mediocre trunk space.

   But in the case of the CLS, the CC and A7, you’d forgive and forget just so you can drive a car that will spin heads faster than a Brad and Angelina sighting in the foyer at the Ritz.

BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe - luxury autombile - Howard Walker, autimotive expert

   This new BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe combines the greasy bits of the latest 5 Series sedan with the body styling cues of the new 6 Series Coupe. Sizewise, the Gran is four inches longer than the Five and close to five inches longer than the Six – if that makes sense – with most of those extra inches going in to the rear passenger space.

   Research, however, is showing that while owners of these four-door coupes like having the flexibility of four doors, they don’t like the restriction of having just four seats – like the Merc and the Audi.

   Which is why BMW calls its new Gran Coupe a 4+1, suggesting that there’s space in the back for an additional passenger. That’s like calling your broom closet an extra bedroom.

   It essentially means there’s an extra seat belt so that someone can sit straddling the center console. That may be fine for a nine-year-old on the way to soccer practice, but not something you’d want your 90-year old grand ma-ma to attempt.

   But again, maybe you’d forgive this Gran Coupe that indignation, just to experience the car’s exquisite interior. While BMW’s design-it-yourself Individual program lets buyers create any color/material combo under the sun, they’ll be offering a special color scheme exclusive to the Gran Coupe comprising Opal White and Amaro Brown leather. It’s like sitting in a cup of Starbucks mocha latte.

BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe - Opal White and Amaro Brown interior

   Initially two versions will be on offer: the 640i powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter in-line six cranking out 315-hp, and the 650i with its twin-turbo 445-horse 4.4-liter V8. Both come with an eight-speed auto as standard.

   No word on pricing yet, but I’m expecting the Gran Coupe to kick-off just above the 640i Coupe’s entry price of around $75,000.

   Straight six, or V8? Lower price, or more equipment. Somehow I see another compromise in the offing.

2013 BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe - automotive editor Howrd Walker- The Wheel World blog


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