Motoring

City Rides: BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé 218i

FACT reviews the first-ever BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé and discover a luxurious experience at an affordable price.

Who doesn’t love a brand-new BMW? We at Fact Magazine have had the privilege of test driving an array of BMW models over the years and are yet to be disappointed by any of their designs. This month we were offered the opportunity to put the first-ever BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé 218i through its paces. Needless to say, we jumped at the opportunity and soon found ourselves thoroughly inspecting this impressive vehicle. 

The appearance of the front end of the Gran Coupé is highly aggressive in nature, highlighted by the three-dimensional mesh design of the kidney grilles featuring a horizontal finish instead of the classic vertical design. The lines running across the bonnet cannot be fully appreciated in pictures and need to be viewed in person for one to truly recognise the beauty of its construction. The slightly angled LED headlights have been superbly sculptured whilst the gloss black finish of the splitter and front air intakes all add a further touch of class. The elegant yet powerful presence of this 2 Series Gran Coupé flows from the front to the flanks in a seamless fashion, revealing a crisp and clean side profile. The alloy wheels are available up to 19-inches in size, whilst the four frameless doors accentuate the premium feel of the vehicle. At the back end, the sporty nature of this car is emphasised by its rear lip spoiler and twin-tailpipe exhaust system. The upturned L-shape of the LED taillights guarantee a striking presence on the roads at night, whilst the gloss black touches provide a first-class finish.

The superb quality exhibited by the exterior of this 2 Series continues in the interior, with high-end materials having been used throughout. All of the trimmings and finishes are first-class, complimented by the soft, ambient lighting. The front seats are heated, comfortable and supportive, giving the driver a sense of control over the vehicle. The layout of the cockpit is functional with all controls and features precisely where you would want them to be. In the back, there is plenty of head and legroom on offer as well as natural lighting thanks to the large windows. A panoramic sunroof is an optional extra that further adds to the already well-lit interior. The rear doors may be on the smaller side; however, the openings have been perfectly designed, ensuring easy, unobstructed movement in and out of the vehicle. There is ample storage space to be found throughout this Gran Coupé, including the 430-litre capacity boot. This area can be increased substantially in size by folding down the rear seats. This can be done through the use of easy to reach levers in the boot itself.

The BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant is part of the operating concept of this new 2 Series, which we found to be exceptionally functional and helpful. This system includes a digital character who is a fully-fledged BMW expert who can offer assistance to the driver. He can learn your habits and routines and subsequently apply them in the appropriate context. He can even provide casual conversation, throwing in the occasional joke or relevant stories. Other features include a BMW Head-up Display and Apple CarPlay preparation amongst many others.

Once out on the tarmac, we were instantly impressed by the three-cylinder petrol engine that powers the 218i. This beauty of an engine produces 140 hp, allowing the vehicle to surge from 0–100 km/h in 8.7 seconds. The power of this engine, combined with the manual gearbox allows the driver to feel fully engaged with the vehicle. Complete with an excellent braking system and top-notch traction control, we always felt in charge of the driving experience, even around the tightest of bends. 

It is evident that the master designers at BMW had people’s safety at the forefront of their minds when designing this vehicle. A multitude of safety features are fitted as standard, including airbags, the Lane Departure Warning system with active lane return, collision and pedestrian warning as well as city braking function. Active Cruise Control, Lane Change Warning, Rear Collision Warning, Crossing Traffic Warning and Innovative Reversing Assistant are all available as optional extras.

We can highly recommend the first-ever BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé to anyone in the market for an attractive, high-performance, functional and comfortable vehicle.

GO: Call BMW AGMC on 800 2462 for more information and to book a test drive of your own. 

 

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David Tapley - Editor
Dubai-based editor for one of the region’s most fiercely local lifestyle publications across Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Dubai and Qatar. Specialised in food, hospitality, arts, culture, and travel-related content.

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