The BMW 6 Series takes all the class and quality of an executive saloon and wraps it up in a sleeker and more elegant body, but the equivalent 5 Series is cheaper and more spacious.
The BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe is one of the most luxurious cars the company makes. If you can’t quite see how it fits into BMW’s line-up, think of it as a sleeker, more stylish version of the 5 Series saloon. As such, it’s a worthy alternative to the Audi A7 and Mercedes S-Class Coupe.
There’s a real elegance to the car’s styling and that kind of understated class and exclusivity is carried over to the cabin. Everything inside is wrapped in soft leather and the asking price guarantees one of the best-built BMW interiors.
Essentially, it’s the same as you would get in the regular 6 Series. So, yes, it’s not the most stylish or most technologically advanced out there, but it is very driver-focused and easy to use. The infotainment system is one of the best around, and there’s no shortage of space or comfort in the front seats, either.
As you can probably imagine, the shape of the rear doors and the way the roofline drops down at the rear of the car means it’s not easy for everyone to get into the rear seats, particularly if they’re tall. But, there’s actually enough room for a couple of adults in there, if just for a short distance. The only person who’ll really feel shortchanged is anyone sat in the middle seat, as it’s quite narrow and the position of the centre console means they have to sit legs akimbo.
It’s a similar story with the boot: the opening is a bit restricted, but the boot itself is a good size. It’ll take 460 litres, which is not far short of what you have in a 7 Series, and you have the added bonus that the rear seats will fold down completely flat, if you want to extend that space.
Don’t let all that practicality fool you, though. Under that sleek body beats the heart of the grandest of grand tourers – and that will be obvious after just a few miles behind the wheel. By that stage, you’ll know this car was made to cross continents in the quickest time possible while you remain in a cocoon of luxury and comfort.
Buying a Six makes no sense: you can buy something that’s bigger and more practical for less money. But, there’s something wonderfully desirable about the Six that makes you just want it
Given how heavy it is, the 6 Series Gran Coupe is remarkably well balanced and very stable at high speeds. The ride comfort is acceptable, even in the firmer ‘Sport’ setting, and the eight-speed gearbox works brilliantly in both manual and automatic modes. Other than a little wind noise, it’s very quiet inside, too, and the only major gripe is that the low-set seat means the view out is a little restricted – not ideal in a car as big as this.
As you might only expect, there’s a fairly limited range of engines, but the good news is that they’re all brilliant. You can pick between two petrol engines and one diesel, all of which have two turbochargers, power and performance to spare, and reasonable running costs.
The diesel-engined 640d is the pick of the bunch, because it’s just as fast as the similarly priced petrol-engined 640i, but is much cheaper to run, thanks to its impressive fuel economy. On the other hand, if you can afford the extra fuel bills, then there’s always the 650i with its 4.4 V8. And, if that still isn’t enough, there is always the 552bhp M6…
Whichever engine you pick, the car will come with a reasonable amount of toys. Even the least expensive SE models have leather upholstery and the best version of BMW’s iDrive infotainment system.
On top of that, there are gizmos like the optional head-up display that allows the driver to stay more focused on the road ahead, by projecting information including current speed, sat-nav directions and speed limits onto the windscreen.
All in all, the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe is a very well sorted and desirable executive car. It looks great, has a fabulous range of engines, is surprisingly good to drive and can carry four people in reasonable comfort. It’s well worth considering if you want a ‘four-door coupe’.