BMW has officially announced its new 2 Series Gran Coupe with this shadowy teaser image. The new model is due to be unveiled in November at the Los Angeles Motor Show, ahead of its commercial release in early 2020. Auto Express can also reveal that the new compact saloon will be coming to the UK.
Apart from its sweeping tail-light design, rear doors and raked roofline, little can be determined from BMW’s teaser shot. The only other confirmed element for the new 2 Series Gran Coupe is the platform, which will be an extended version of BMW’s UKL front-wheel-drive architecture borrowed from the 1 Series hatch and the current MINI.
The 2 Series Gran Coupe will be an entirely new model for BMW, slotting into its growing ‘Gran Coupe’ range. The German firm will expand this line-up further, adding an 8 Series model next year and a 4 Series variant in 2020. This 2 Series version will act as a more practical, style-focused alternative to the 1 Series hatch, which is also due to arrive next year.
BMW 2 Series: design and platform
We’ve spied a few prototypes undergoing testing, all of which sport heavy camouflage. Our exclusive images give a better idea of how the production version will look. From the front, the 2 Series Gran Coupe will look almost identical to the 1 Series hatch, with BMW’s signature kidney grille flanked by a pair of LED headlamps.
The 2 Series Gran Coupe’s rakish roofline separates its design from the 1 Series. It will sit between the 1 Series hatch and 3 Series saloon in terms of size, with rear legroom being more generous than BMW’s entry-level model, thanks to its slightly extended wheelbase.
Specifications for the new model are yet to be announced but, as it shares its underpinnings with the latest 2 Series, we expect a similar range of engines. The entry-point is likely to be a 138bhp 1.5-litre three-cylinder petrol, with BMW also offering a pair of 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrols, with 148bhp and 248bhp respectively, plus a range of 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesels.
Transmission options will consist of a six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic, while some versions will be offered with the option of xDrive four-wheel drive. Unlike the entry-level BMWs of old, a rear-wheel-drive variant will not be offered, ending the manufacturer’s monopoly as the sole provider of a compact rear-wheel-drive model.
Other benefits of the platform include its easy support for plug-in hybrid technology. The system is expected to mirror that found in the 2 Series Active Tourer MPV, by combining a 148bhp 1.5-litre engine with an electric motor, which should provide the car with an electric-only range of more than 32 miles and CO2 emissions below 50g/km.
At the other extreme of the new mode’s range, a future M Performance model could feature. If so, it will have to make use of four-wheel drive and a powerful 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine due to the constraints of the new UKL platform and the demands of the market.
The current M140i is the only car in that segment to use a six-cylinder engine and rear-wheel drive; the move to a 2.0-litre four-cylinder will make a future M model a more direct rival for the likes of the Audi S3 and Mercedes-AMG A 45.
What do we think of the standard BMW 2 Series? Our in-depth review reveals its strengths and weaknesses…