BMW's four-door 6 Series has arrived on the international scene this week, following reports last year that BMW would put its 6-previewing Gran Coupe Concept into production.
Taking the name of its concept forebear, the new 6 Series Gran Coupe enters as the third bodystyle in the 6 Series range, coming after this year's debut of the Coupe and Convertible models (both are now on sale in Australia).
On the styling front, the addition of two extra doors has done little to spoil the lines of the regular 6 Series Coupe, while the front and rear is unchanged from the look of its siblings.
Slotting into BMW's sedan range between the 5 and 7 Series cars, the Gran Coupe is longer than the Coupe by 113mm, allowing for greater legroom in the rear row, which is also positioned higher for better visibility.
Seating in the four-door 6 Series is described as a "4+1" arrangement, meaning that while you'll get a third person in the rear, you shouldn't expect comfort to go with it.
Mechanical Package and Features
In Europe, the 6 Series Gran Coupe will launch with two petrol engines and one diesel.
Kicking off the range is the 640d, powered by a six-cylinder diesel that delivers 230kW and 630Nm of torque. The 0-100km/h run is listed at 5.4 seconds, with an ultra-frugal fuel consumption rating of 5.5 l/100km on the combined cycle.
In the 640i, BMW's six-cylinder in-line petrol engine delivers 235kW and 450Nm of torque, and this one will hit 100km/h in 5.4 seconds also. It's thirstier than the diesel of course, with fuel consumption listed at 7.8 l/100km.
Topping the range is the 4.4 litre V8-powered 650i, delivering 330kW and 650Nm, with a 0-100km/h time of 4.6 seconds.
Whether other drivetrains will join the 6 Series Gran Coupe range is unclear, but - as with reports of a similar treatment for the Coupe and Convertible - we can likely expect an M6 version (or the "Gran Coupe M," perhaps).
The Gran Coupe's driving aids include Integral Active Steering, Dynamic Damper Control and Active Roll Stabilisation, along with four driving modes: Eco Pro, Comfort, Sport and Sport+.
Depending on the selection, these modes adjust throttle response, gear shifts, shock absorber behaviour and active roll stabilisation levels.
Speaking with TMR, BMW Australia's Scott Croaker has confirmed that the Gran Coupe will make its local debut in the third quarter of 2012, although it could possibly arrive as early as July.