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BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe preview

What's this?
It’s the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe, a car that follows a formula set by the now defunct 6 Series Gran Coupe, and which continues with BMW’s two larger models – the 4 Series Gran Coupe and the 8 Series Gran Coupe. In essence, what you have here is a compact four-door saloon that has the rakish looks of a two-door coupe. Or at least, that’s what BMW would have you believe.

What will its rivals be?
Obvious contenders include the Mercedes CLA (and even the A-Class Saloon), as well as the Audi A3 Saloon, but you could also consider it an alternative to regular D-segment saloons like the Ford Mondeo and Opel Insignia. It’s smaller, but the prestige badge could see many customers flocking to the 2 Series Gran Coupe from larger, non-premium rivals.

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Any tech info?
The 2 Series Gran Coupe shares its mechanicals and underpinnings with the third-generation BMW 1 Series. This is no longer a rear-wheel-drive car, but one driven by the front axle alone, save for on the more potent models equipped with xDrive all-wheel drive. As such, the 2 Series Gran Coupe is also ostensibly front-wheel drive, although there are versions that will come with xDrive.

What will the range be like?
Three variants have been confirmed for the 2 Series Gran Coupe launch. There’s a 1.5-litre, three-cylinder turbocharged petrol model called the 218i (front-wheel drive), there’s a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder turbodiesel named the 220d and then there’s an M Performance flagship from the off, in the form of the M235i xDrive. This uses a turbocharged four-cylinder 2.0-litre engine, as seen in the M135i, X2 M35i and some of the fastest MINIs, to deliver 306hp and 450Nm. The 218i and the 220d, by the way, have 140- and 190hp accordingly. Expect anything from 4.2 litres/100km (67.3mpg) with the 220d, to 7.1 litres/100km (39.8mpg) with the M235i. CO2 emissions are between 110- and 162g/km, and BMW Ireland has confirmed that the range will kick off from around €34,000 with the 218i Sport.

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Expectations?
Well, any new BMW is interesting, but the 2 Series Gran Coupe has hardly won lots of fans with its appearance since it was revealed – to say its design is challenging is underplaying it somewhat. Nevertheless, there has never been a four-door Gran Coupe model of the 2 Series prior to this, so it could open up yet another lucrative new niche for the Bavarian manufacturer. If it drives OK, which it should, then the sales should rumble along quite nicely, despite how the car looks.

Author: Carzone

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