Another day, another Gran Coupe from BMW. The family grows with the addition of this: the 2 Series Gran Coupe. It comes in two flavors, the 228i xDrive Gran Coupe and M235i xDrive Gran Coupe. Let’s take a deeper dive.
Yes, I know the names are complex. Remember when BMW’s full lineup was 3, 5, 7, Z4, Z8, and X5? Those were simpler times.
This 2 Series isn’t actually based on the same platform as the current two-door 2 that we get in the U.S. market. That little winner is a rear-wheel-drive sporty coupe, but this smaller-than-a-3-Series four-door is actually based on a front-wheel-drive Mini platform.
In order to make the transition between RWD architecture and FWD architecture, BMW is launching the new 2 with AWD only for the time being.
Both the 228i and the M235i will be delivered to Americans with four driven wheels. Will it help ease the pain? We’ll see.
Both 2 Series Gran Coupe models are powered by the same 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, backed up by the same eight-speed automatic, and delivering power to all four wheels through the same xDrive system.
It’s a damn shame that this little AWD demon doesn’t even consider offering a manual transmission. That could be its one saving grace, especially in the M-ish model variant.
The 228i will accelerate from stop to sixty in six seconds flat, while the M235i cranks that down to 4.6 seconds. The non-M tops out at 130 mph, while the sorta-M will continue on to 155 mph. The M235i makes its extra power with a larger turbocharger, a reinforced rotating assembly, higher flow injectors, a less restrictive exhaust system, and improved cooling with two extra radiators versus the 228i.
That translates to 301 HP and 331 lb-ft of torque, but adds an extra 80-ish pounds to the 2 Series’ weight. The base 228i comes with a pretty stout 228 horses and 258 torques in a 3,530-pound package.
Despite the car’s differences from the lovely 2 Series coupe, this Gran Coupe model looks pretty much like a BMW and shares a lot of DNA with the two-door half-sibling. It’s clear they share a parent, but not both parents.
The design is a little overwrought, but it’s not hard to look at, especially in M guise. And by most accounts, the AWD Minis aren’t too bad a platform from which to base this thing.
Similarly, the inside of the car looks BMW enough, but clearly isn’t quite the same as the other 2 Series.
Pricing hasn’t yet been announced, but the AWD 230i xDrive coupe starts at $37,300, and the M240i xDrive coupe starts at $47,800. I’d expect both of these four-door models to undercut their two-door not-quite-counterparts by a few bucks, but we won’t know for sure how much until BMW officially launches the car next month.
Production is expected to begin in January with deliveries to U.S. customers later in Q1.