The engineers at BMW's M GmbH obviously paid attention when their pre-school teachers taught the importance of sharing. After building the M5 sedan, the two-door M6 coupe, and the open-top M6 convertible, BMW extended the twin-turbo love to the M6 Gran Coupe. The regular 6-Series Gran Coupe is already a halfway point between the four-door 5 Series and two-door 6 Series, so it only makes sense for BMW to bridge the gap between the M5 and M6 with a slinky M6 Gran Coupe.
To match that straight-line performance in corners, the Gran Coupe also receives the electronically controlled Active M Differential, adaptive suspension, and unique aluminum suspension components that are fitted to the M5 and M6 coupe. Giant cross-drilled cast iron brakes are standard, with BMW's fade-resistant carbon ceramic units optional.
As with all BMW M cars in recent memory, the company notes that the M6 Gran Coupe was developed on the Nürburgring in Germany. BMW has an on-site test facility there so it can easily check that every new M car has the acceleration, grip, and braking necessary to tackle tracks like the demanding Green Hell.
Familiar Engine, Familiar Performance Figures
It's no surprise, then, that the M6 Gran Coupe uses the same twin-turbo 4.4-liter V-8 engine as BMW's other big M cars. Like the M5 and M6, the Gran Coupe sends 560 hp and 500 lb-ft of torque through a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission to the rear wheels. BMW predicts a 0-to-62-mph sprint of 4.1 seconds and top speed is limited to 155 mph. That matches the 4.1-second acceleration time of the regular M6 coupe and barely beats the 4.3-second time predicted for the M5 sedan.
Carbon Fiber, Big Wheels, Painted Calipers
The Gran Coupe has a bonded carbon-fiber roof panel just like that of the M6 coupe. It swoops dramatically toward the sloping rear window and employs a racy center indent to create a double-bubble appearance. Other aesthetic upgrades mirror those of the M5 and M6: unique 20-inch wheels, flared fenders to accommodate the car's widened track, new front and rear fascias. M division's signature quartet of exhaust tips bookend the rear diffuser, and special aerodynamically-sound mirrors perch on each A-pillar. The standard brake calipers are painted blue, while the carbon-ceramic stoppers identify themselves with gold paint.
On the inside, the M6 Gran Coupe's "4+1" interior adopts an anthracite-colored Alcantara headliner, merino leather upholstery, abundant carbon-fiber trim, power sports seats with bolsters, and the M-specific steering wheel with shift paddles.
Middle-Ground M Car
With its four-door layout, the BMW M6 Gran Coupe is immediately more practical than the two-door M6 coupe; thanks to its sultry flowing roofline, the Gran Coupe is also sexier than the three-box M5 sedan. As such, the M6 Gran Coupe could be the perfect middle ground for buyers who want high-performance thrills, stunning looks, and the ability to carry a few passengers. The M6 Gran Coupe goes on sale here in early summer 2013, with pricing and fuel economy to be announced nearer that time.