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.
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.
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.
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.