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A Grand Coupé

BMW - 218i Sport Gran Coupé

BMW’s latest offering is a great addition to the 2-Series range

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The Gran Coupé 2-series

The Gran Coupé 2-series

Familiar look: The Gran Couplé is similar to its siblings in the range

Familiar look: The Gran Couplé is similar to its siblings in the range

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The Gran Coupé 2-series

LIKE the well-oiled machines that they are, the BMW still has all angles 'Covid' during this crisis with its production lines in Bavaria still in full swing.

The car market as a whole may have literally crashed (pardon the pun) these last few months but there is hope the new year will bring buyers back when Europe gets on its feet again.

BMW is obviously very confident as it has recently added to its successful coupé line-up with the new, sleek 2-Series Gran Coupé. The car was first unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November last year and completed both BMW's 2-Series line-up and the company's four-door coupé range.

The success story of four-door BMW coupés began in 2012 with the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupé, followed two years later by the BMW 4-Series Gran Coupé. They were later followed by the BMW 8-Series Gran Coupé and customer deliveries of the 2-Series Gran Coupé began in March of this year.

If, like me, you are a bit confused with all this new BMW badging I will try to explain the new 2-Series in layman's terms. Basically, this new model is a four-door saloon version of the current front-wheel-drive BMW 1 Series. Confused? Me too.

On the outside, the new BMW 2-Series Gran Coupé is probably not to everyone's taste and has had its knockers in the motoring media.

Personally, I quite like the look especially in black, which really makes it stand out in the crowd.

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Familiar look: The Gran Couplé is similar to its siblings in the range

Familiar look: The Gran Couplé is similar to its siblings in the range

Familiar look: The Gran Couplé is similar to its siblings in the range

The stand-out characteristic of the BMW 2-Series Gran Coupé is its silhouette which, like the frameless side windows for the four doors, is lifted from the classical coupé blueprint.

The new model is 4,526mm long and 1,800mm wide, but stands just 1,420mm tall. Despite its low-slung appearance, passengers are well catered for thanks to the 2,670mm wheelbase and there are various ways to expand the 430-litre load compartment.

On the inside, there is quite a familiar look to most of its siblings in the smaller range albeit with a few cheaper plastics around that dash that don't typically spell out premium BMW to me. Two other things that really bugged me were that although my test model did come with parking sensors, there was no rear-view camera to aid with parking and no heated seats. Even the cheapest of cheap cars these days come with a rear-view camera and something to warm the bum.

On the road, the new 2-Series BMW Gran Coupé is very smooth and forgiving on all types of surfaces and the 1.5-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine ( the same engine that is fitted in most of the MINI range) is quite smooth and noiseless.

However, I wasn't as impressed with the fuel efficiency and couldn't get anywhere near the claimed 6.2l/100km that BMW say it will do.

On the engine front, there is the aforementioned 1.5-litre petrol which BMW say has been enhanced to deliver better fuel efficiency (yes I know).

The diesel offering comes in the form of the 2.0-litre four-cylinder BMW 220d, which generates a maximum power output of 190hp with a peak torque of 400Nm. The sprint from zero to 100km/h takes just 7.5 seconds on the way to a top speed of 230km/h.

Overall though, the new 2-Series Gran Coupé is a fantastic addition to the 2-Series range. It lacks a bit of that thoroughbred premium BMW feel in places but it offers buyers a good opportunity to get themselves on the first rung of the BMW ladder.

Prices for the new 2-Series Gran Coupé start at €35,045 and my test car was fitted with a few added extras that drove the price up to €38,086.