New 2020 BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe aims to topple Mercedes CLA

20 Nov, 2019 9:00pm James Brodie

The latest BMW 2 Series family member is a four-door coupe, and it's on show at the 2019 LA Motor Show

BMW has expanded the 2 Series line-up with a newcomer designed to take the Mercedes CLA head on, and it's on show at the 2019 Los Angeles Motor Show

Called 2 Series Gran Coupe, it’s a car that ensures that the 2 Series family is the most diverse cluster in the BMW fold. This new, compact four-door coupe lines up alongside the rear-wheel-drive, 2 Series two-door coupe - which will get a proper replacement - and the firm’s Active Tourer and Grand Tourer MPVs. It’s also a junior to the new 8 Series Gran Coupe, and It lands on sale in Britain next March with an entry level three-cylinder powered 218i badged car likely to start from £25,000. 

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Under the metal it shares its basic underpinnings with the latest 1 Series hatchback, the X2 SUV and the MINI Hatch too. Known as UKL, the platform supports front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive powertrain layouts, and while a 1.5-litre three-cylinder engine is the starting point for the line-up, four-cylinder petrol and diesel variants have also been confirmed. 

That entry level 218i model has 138bhp and 220Nm torque, sending drive to the front wheels via a six-speed manual gearbox and delivering 49.6mpg. A hot M235i xDrive model will also be offered from launch, with 302bhp, an eight-speed automatic gearbox and all-wheel-drive. 0-62mph is claimed in 4.8 seconds, when the car is equipped with an optional M Performance package. 

A 220d diesel covers long-distance and fleet buyers, with 187bhp, 400Nm torque and fuel economy of 62.8mpg and carbon emissions of 119g/km. 

The front end of the 2 Series Gran Coupe is taken from the 1 Series hatchback and is completed with full LED headlights on every model. But the rest of the car is all-new in design. From the A-pillar onwards the 1 Series’ hatchback form factor merges into a compact four-door coupe, while around the back the 2 Series Gran Coupe boasts a brand new rear end with thin, horizontal LED taillights. 

Sizing up at 4,526mm long, 1,800mm wide and 1,420mm tall, it’s just about a size down from the 3 Series saloon, while a 430-litre boot means there’s more luggage space than you’ll find in the 1 Series too. 

Inside, the interior mirrors that of the brand’s entry-level hatchback. The dashboard layout and switchgear is exactly the same, with an 8.8-inch display standard. A larger 10.25-inch central screen will be offered, as will a fully digitalised instrument panel, all of it running the latest BMW iDrive software. 

The arrival of the new 2 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t mean that the two-door 2 Series Coupe will be pulled from sale. In fact, according to 2 Series Gran Coupe product manager Gernot Stuhl, work has begun on a successor. 

“There will be a successor that will be on a rear-wheel-drive platform, so customers who want and need a new 2 Series coupe will find that in our line-up, as well as those who want a six-cylinder.” 

The rear-wheel-drive 2 Series will be the sole possessor of the M2 badge, with the 2 Series Gran Coupe line-up not to advance beyond the four-cylinder M235i.

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