BMW go back to basics
Geraldine Herbert discovers the BMW 2 Series is a surprisingly practical coupe with plenty of the family DNA
From electric cars to a front-wheel drive multi-purpose vehicle, it seems there is a BMW for everyone. But if you thought a compact rear-wheel drive coupe was missing from the line up, then think again. The new 2 Series coupe is the replacement for the 1 Series coupe and is based on the hatchback.
The 2 Series coupe inherits more of the family DNA than the model it replaces and - while it shares its bonnet, front wings and doors with the three-door - the look is cleaner, with nice details front and rear, including sharper headlamps, front fog lights and stylish LED tail lights.
Inside it is functional with clean lines, but it feels sufficiently luxurious to distinguish itself. The wider track and longer wheelbase means that it is particularly roomy inside. Access to the two rear buckets seats is good and, while it's unlikely you'll fit two adults in there comfortably, it is a lot better than its rivals in that regard. The boot space is very generous at 390 litres, which is even 70 litres more than that of a Ford Focus.
On the road it is effortlessly fast, with light and direct steering. BMW's 50:50 weight distribution and rear-wheel drive makes it both entertaining and agile. Flick the settings to sport mode to feel the full power of this lightweight coupe.
We tested the 220d diesel; with 184bhp it can reach 100km from rest in around 7.1 seconds and returns 4.4 litre per 100km. Prices for the 2 Series range start at €35,700 for the 2i8d manual, rising to €60,443 for the M235i automatic. The 2 Series is a return to what BMW do best; creating compact, agile, rear-wheel drive coupes. It is beautiful to drive, economical to run and comes with a sufficient dash of practicality for everyday driving. Overall it proves an interesting - if pricey - alternative to a hot hatch.