Tuesday, February 23, 2016

2016 BMW M6 Gran Coupe: The Four Door German Beast

Highlights: The M6 is available as a ‘true coupe’ and convertible, too.

Test Vehicle’s MSRP: $133,500 (base price:$118,195 )

Seating Capacity: 4

Standard Safety Features: ABS; airbags; a rearview camera; a tire pressure monitoring system; LED adaptive front headlights; LED fog lights; ambiance interior lights; an auto dimming rearview mirror; keyless entry system; electric parking brakes; Xenon adaptive headlights; and a rearview camera

Standard Equipment: 20-inch tires; 20-way power front Merino leather seats; heated front seats; carbon fiber interior trim; 10-inch navigation screen; a radar-activated cruise control system; a start/stop fuel engine saver system; heated front seats; automatic 4-zone climate control system; parking distance control feature; a power operated tilt/telescopic steering wheel; power adjustable heated side mirrors; an auto trunk closer; active ‘M’ suspension; an engine start/stop function; an electronic controlled engine cooling system; a carbon fiber roof; an enhanced iDrive screen; illuminated M door sill finishers; and a power tilt/telescopic steering wheel

Optional Features On Test Vehicle: a manual transmission; M Carbon Gold-Plated Ceramic Brakes; an executive package, which includes a heated steering wheel, a power rear sunshade, rear side shades, front ventilated seats, heated rear seats and a head-up windshield display system; and a smartphone integration system

Other Trim Level:

M6 Series 4.4L Coupe

M6 Series 4.4L Convertible

Standard Audio On Test Vehicle:  a 16-speaker, a 600-watt Harman Kardon audio system with AM/FM/HD and satellite radio

Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes

USB connectivity:  Yes

Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 4 years or 50,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty: 4 years or 50,000 miles

Standard Engine/Horsepower: 8-cylinder/560-hp

Recommended Fuel: Premium

Standard Fuel Mileage:

What’s New:  For the 2016 model year, the trio of M6 vehicles are virtually a carryover, with the exception of standard LED headlights and a new competition package upgrade.

Why: The 560-horsepower trio of M-Series vehicles are available as a traditional coupe, a convertible and a four-door sedan. Each of the athletically enhanced vehicles are based off of BMW’s standard trio of 6-Series and 5-Series vehicles.  

Our powerhouse Gran Coupe was meticulously outfitted with wall to wall red leather, from the seats to the seat belts to the headliner.  In fact, this is the first vehicle we’ve reviewed with a suede and leather headliner. This head-turning four door beast, with its coupe-like styling, stands out from a typical Bimmer due to its carbon fiber roof, side skirts, twin tailpipes, stout 20-inch wheels and optional gold-plated brake calipers.

The 8-cylinder Beast packed a 4.4-liter turbocharged, 560-horsepower engine, which was all controlled by our standard 6-speed manual transmission. Whew, just reflecting upon those words, reminded us of how much fun we had while seated behind the wheel of ‘The Beast.’ And thank God our vehicle was accessorized with the optional Head Up display system, which posted the speed on the windshield. This must-have feature aided us from having any type of unpleasant encounter with anything that had blue flashing lights.


Now for those who aren’t willing (or capable) to shift through the easy-to-use six gears of heaven, a 7-speed double-clutch automatic transmission is available for one’s driving enjoyment.  Moreover, while our Gran Coupe lacked the latest optional advanced safety driving features, BMW does offer a blind spot monitor, a lane departure warning system and a surround view camera which could all be viewed on the gigantic 10-inch infotainment screen.

Furthermore, besides the M6 being a true driver’s oriented vehicle, ‘The Beast’ has wide supporting front seats, a crystal clear 16-speaker audio system and the latest lux options to enhance the comfort of the rear passengers, too. Yes, ‘The Beast’ is a mean looking road warrior with all the hype to back it up.

But: With the M6 Gran Coupe, the vehicle was only capable of seating 4 -- as opposed to -- 5 occupants like in the standard 5-Series models. Unfortunately, while we love all of the excess power that oozes out from what seems to be effortlessly from underneath the hood, realistically, this powerhouse beast is just too much vehicle for just roaming on the city streets. Like a baby yearning to climb out of a crib, our test vehicle was begging to be placed on the open roads. To our dismay, we were unable to honor the request.

Besides the power, there is no room for a power moonroof, because of the carbon fiber roof. Yes, this is truly a case where one can’t have everything. However, if having access to the open air is of high importance, one could always opt for its convertible sibling.

Lastly, for those who reside in a climate that requires an all-wheel drive system, the M5 only has rear wheel drive capabilities. All of its coupe-like premium class competitors are available in an all-wheel drive configuration.

Verdict: BMW continues to push the limit with niche vehicles. The M6 is just the latest trio of vehicles from the German brand, as they explore every aspect of catering to the luxury buyer, with a hunger for power. The well-executed M6 Gran Coupe offers a sporty visual affect that sets this German sedan apart from most other vehicles in the midsize premium coupe-like segment. In this premium price 4-seater segment, there are only three other makes and models to consider, before signing off on the dotted line. Conversely, its competitors are only available with an automatic transmission.

Competition: Audi RS 7, Mercedes-Benz CLS Coupe AMG CLS63 and Porsche Panamera Turbo


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