Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Where does the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe fit?

BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe
The 6-Series Gran Coupe is BMW's answer to the growing 4-door coupe segment currently led by the Mercedes CLS and Audi A7. It follows its failed previous attempt to enter the segment, the 5-Series GT, a rather bulbous sportback based on the 5-Series sedan. However, I can't help but question the strength of BMW's new 6-Series entry. Click through for my thoughts.

BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe
The original Mercedes CLS was a dramatically sleeker car - inside and out - than the E-Class it was built upon. Similarly, the Audi A7 looks markedly sportier than the more stately Audi A6. However, the 6-Series GC looks like any old BMW sedan. From afar, a non-car-enthusiast could easily mistake the 6 GC for the 5- or 7-Series. The new 6-Series Coupe is much less boaty than over the outgoing model, but it still doesn't really excite me. A 4-door coupe is typically special because of an aggressively sloped roof and rear window, a smaller, sportier cabin, and a wedge-shaped side profile. I think the 6 GC is attractive...I would definitely say more attractive than the already-attractive 5-Series, but something is missing.

Maybe it's the trunk that isn't working for me. There are way too many lips, creases, and bends for my reminds me of the first-gen 7-Series, whose trunk also had a double-chin. The original CLS's trunk was intriguing because of its seamless, simple, graceful curves. The A7, too, has a simple, low-slung rear fascia that is reminiscent of a stealth fighter...the taillights have a futuristic simplicity that reminds me of Lamborghini's latest a Reventon or Aventador. The 6 GC does look lower-slung than the 5-Series, but it doesn't have the same dramatic effect its competitors have. An auto-spoiler would have been a cool effect. The tail lights are quite attractive...but that's about all.

The side profile is attractive, but it looks like the designers simply added a Buick Regal-like hockey stick to the 5-Series design. It's certainly not as transformative as the CLS was from the E-Class. I'm not sure the ornate side airvents are needed - the design may have worked better without them.

The interior is beautiful and certainly up to BMW's standards. The avantgarde curves, while not my cup of tea, are ameliorated by the 2-tone color scheme and abundance of leather shown in this picture. Having not driven or sat in the 6-Series GC, I can only speculate, but if the 6 GC is on par with other BMW models, the gadgets and feature functionality will probably surpass the Mercedes and Audi competitors.

To conclude - I think the BMW 6-Series Gran Coupe will sell better than the 5-Series GT did. The 6 GC is attractive and likely rich with gadgets, but it does not evoke the same emotion that either the CLS or A7 does. And isn't that the whole point of a 4-door coupe?

1 comment:

  1. "The original Mercedes CLS was a dramatically more sleeker car..." Really, more sleeker?
    I think they worked too hard to make the BMW look modern and futuristic. And in doing so, it just looks mundane like a family car.