WITH ALL THE STYLING conversations centred around the ever-larger kidney grille we tend to forget that BMW make some lovely coupes. The swoopy design language, those signature frameless doors and the low-slung profile have always made for head-turners, of late with an added element of usability thanks to the expanding ranks of 4-door coupes. If you count yourself a fan of the genre, I have news for you — the breed is set to become considerably more affordable with the introduction of the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe. We will come to the pricing in a bit, because that is both the 2GC’s trump card and the shocker but first, let’s look at what makes this BMW very, erm, un-BMW like. This is front-wheel-drive!
BMW sedans have always had one formula, longitudinally-mounted engines driving either the rear or all four wheels. The 2 Series Gran Coupe goes against the grain with a transversely mounted engine and front-wheel-drive setup, essentially a Mini platform, also seen on the X1 currently sold in India. What using this platform does, is make the car more affordable, spacious and to a certain extent practical too. But does this take away from the driver-focused experience that almost every BMW sedan has offered till date?
A genuine head-turner
The 2 Series Gran Coupe is an all-new model in the BMW lineup and the styling, among other things is what they hope will set it apart from most of its competitors, offering plenty of visual cues to the 8 Series Gran Coupe. And, thankfully, it doesn’t have the bling-bling grille upfront as this car is designed for the more sophisticated European and American markets, rather than China. You get the wider and chrome-festooned interpretation of BMW’s kidney grille that dominates the nose, but it does look really nice delivering a neat and aggressive stance. It also compliments the raked-back headlight with their double-barrel LED detailing, reminiscent of the Z4 sports car in BMW’s lineup. The aggressive design language continues on the bumper, which is again similar to that seen on the 8 Series, giving it a very premium touch.
Things get interesting when you walk over to the profile. The roofline is flowing, going with the Coupe in the name, and it ends in a fastback-like rear, sloping down sharply. Frameless doors allow for a lower roof and clean-looking overall silhouette. Things at the rear however, are very new and very funky with a very modern and sporty-looking rear end. It features a variation of BMW’s ‘L’-shaped LED taillights, which have now become a signature design element on all their latest cars. Dual exhaust tips go well with the busy design of the rear. Overall the design is pleasing and will appeal to the younger audience it’s targeted at, a lot of whom will be first time BMW owners. It looks especially good in this Misano blue shade of our test car, which is exclusively available on the M sport variant that rides on bigger 18-inch wheels, compared to 17s on the Sportline variant.
Loaded on the inside
This may be among the most affordable BMWs on sale in India, but you’d never say that while getting into the cabin. It feels just as nicely put together and premium as any other car in BMW India’s lineup. Yes, it is narrower and a bit tighter than the 3, but like most BMWs, the driving position is just spot on, you feel at one with the car, sitting nice and low. Seat comfort too is excellent, with plenty of adjustments to find just the right spot for you. The large front seats offer great side support and the cushioning strikes a nice balance between comfort and snugness, holding you in place nicely.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
THE LAST STRIKE
Seeing out the tumultous year of 2020 with a bang – chasing snow, sand and the sea on one final road trip
Porsche’s next 911 GT3 will be officially revealed in February 2021, but we caught up with GT boss Andreas Preuninger during a final development drive to discover what to expect
Toyota Urban Cruiser
Toyota enters the hotly contested compact SUV segment with the Urban Cruiser, the rebadged version of the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza
Quiet, comfortable and refined — the Volvo S60 may not be a driver’s car but it certainly is desirable
TOYOTA GR YARIS, VW GOLF GTI & HONDA CIVIC TYPE R
A vintage year for hot hatches sees these three very different examples vying for places in the final. John Barker reveals which make it through
THRILL OF LEARNING
Rookie rider Suvrat heads to the racetrack to hone his riding skills ahead of two race weekends
The Aprilia SXR 160 was revealed at the Auto Expo 2020. Eleven months down the line, we finally get astride the maxi-scooter
The 488 returns as a limited-run, track-only special and it is absolutely bonkers
ARIEL NOMAD R & ASTON MARTIN DBX
They’re like nothing else at this year’s eCoty, so can their unique abilities and appeal see them make their way through to the second round? Henry Catchpole finds out
Ferrari F8 Tributo, Lamborghini Huracán Evo Rwd & McLaren 765LT
Three spectacular supercars, but they can’t all go through, can they? Richard Meaden attempts to identify the weaker players
YOGA & PEACE
DEEPAK CHOPRA speaks with DAAJI about the role Yoga has to play in bringing about world peace. This is an excerpt from their conversation broadcast on International Day of Peace, September 21, 2020. That documentary is available at https://heartfulness.org/en/international-day-of-peace/.
Create the habit of meditation
CHIRAG KULKARNI, Co-Founder and CMO of Medly Pharmacies in the USA, speaks with RISHIKA SHARMA about creating a regular meditation practice, so as to make it a habit. He also shares how meditation has benefited both his personal and professional life.
SHIA'S PRIVATE TEMPLE OF DOOM!
Indiana Jones gig derailed by abuse scandal
"Food Raconteur” Ashok Nageshwaran wants to tell you a story.
THE MAKING OF A MODEL MINORITY
Indian Americans rarely stop to ask why our entrance into American society has been so rapid—or to consider what we have in common with other nonwhite Americans.
In 2017, DR. VANDANA SHIVA spoke with KIM HUGHES about the sacredness of the Earth, the work she has been doing to bring awareness and change in the field of sustainable agriculture, and the importance of understanding our interconnectedness with Nature, and how we can change the way we eat.
How four master builders defined the path of the 2021 BMW R 18
DIAMONDS - A Luxury Gem Steeped in Fact & Fable
The diamond is one fabled gemstone! For example, google “Hope Diamond” to see all the legends associated with just this one stone said to bring misfortune to its owners.
Brown Sugaa and Medusa
Brown Sugaa and Medusa