- Great engines
- Comfortable yet sharp handling
- High level of equipment
- Excellent M235i model
- Emissions could be lower
- No grab handles on roof
Just as BMW has renamed the 3 Series Coupe the 4 Series, the same fate has befallen the 1 Series Coupe. So behold the all-new BMW 2 Series Coupe.
The German company is keen to point out that this is not simply a renaming exercise. The BMW 2 Series Coupe is all-new and a significant departure from the old 1 Series Coupe – and not only can you tell by its looks, it drives better too. It’s also fairly cheap to run and a little more expensive to buy, while offering far more kit at the same time. So what’s not to like?
Bigger inside and out
It is now longer and wider than the outgoing 1 Series Coupe, and its wheelbase is longer too to help stability. This is something you really notice on the open road, where the 2 Series feels more assured than its predecessor.
Inside, the front passengers have more headroom, while rear passengers secure more space to stretch out their legs. Even the luggage space has increased by an extra 20 litres, so total capacity is 390 litres. That’s a huge 100 litres more than the current Audi TT, which is arguably this car’s main rival.
Rear seat backs can be dropped in a 50/50 spilt or there is an option to specify a 40/20/40 spilt for increased load space flexibility.
Emphasis on performance
BMW is keen to promote the car's ability to deliver a sporty drive with a range of engines particularly chosen for this purpose. As you would expect with BMW, all Coupes are rear-wheel drive.
There is a choice of two petrol and three diesel engines, including a 2.0-litre 181bhp version (called the 220i) and a range-topping 3.0-litre, six-cylinder M version with a whopping 322bhp (M235i). In terms of diesels it’s one engine (a 2.0-litre, four-cylinder unit) but with three different power outputs to choose from: 141bhp (dubbed the 218d), 181bhp (220d) and the top dog, 215bhp version (225d).
We’ve tested one of each – the M235i and the 220d – and loved them both for different reasons. See the Performance section to find out why.
Running costs improved
While performance is the focus, BMW is keen to point out that engine efficiency has also been improved thanks to stop/start technology for both manual and automatic versions, 'air curtains' that reduce drag by improving air flow and an ECO mode that includes a coasting function on automatic gearboxes.
The star performer is the 218d that emits a claimed 114g/km of CO2 at best and 117g/km at worst. This engine won’t be available straight away but will join the range shortly after launch.
M235i tops the range
Right at the top of the range sits the M235i - a high-performance version with clever suspension and brakes, adjustable traction and stability control systems, a 3.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine and the option of six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic gearboxes. The former will cover 0-62mph in five seconds flat while the latter does it two tenths quicker at 4.8 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 155mph.
To find out more about this all-new model, read on for the full Parkers BMW 2 Series Coupe review.