ALL NEW 2013 BMW 640i GRAN COUPE

ĎA GRAND COUPE IN SEDAN CLOTHESí
Text & Photos by Harvey Schwartz - August 2012

The all-new 2013 BMW 640i Gran Coupe combines the stunning proportions, design and driving dynamics of the 6-Series coupe with interior room and amenities for up to five passengers.  Perfect proportions, precise lines and sleekly contoured surfaces give the all-new BMW 6-Series Grand Coupe the unique ability to satisfy the driver who wants a luxurious and sporty coupe yet needs a car capable of carrying four adults  in comfort and luxury.  First out is the 6-cylinder 640i that I tested, then the V8 powered 650i and by early fall, the 650i xDrive all-wheel drive model.

Sporting a sleek, athletic look with a length of 197 inches and a 116.8 inch wheelbase, the Gran Coupe is 4.4 inches longer, 74.6 inches wide and stands 54.8 inches high, wider and lower than its coupe sibling giving it more interior room, yet wider, and lower making the handling dynamics even more intense.  It cuts through the air with a 0.29 coefficient of drag.

The unmistakable design language gives the new Gran Coupe an aura of athletic elegance.  The long powerfully contoured hood, short front overhang and set-back passenger compartment team up with a 4.4 increase in body length, a 4.5 inch longer wheelbase presenting a fresh take on the hallmark proportions of a BMW automobile.  The Gran Coupeís distinctive profile is dominated by its four-door, elegantly stretched roof line which flows smoothly into the rear end, is a similarly eye-catching and distinctive feature of the new models silhouette.

With an inline 4-liter, 6-cylinder, 4 VANOS valvetrain, all-alloy, direct injected and turbo-charged engine, the 315hp and 330lb.ft. of torque rockets the new Gran Coupe out to 60mph from a standstill in just 5.4 seconds.  Hooked up to the new smooth shifting 8-speed automatic transmission, you get immediate traction with higher mpg efficiency.  Getting up and down the gears faster are paddle shifters on the leather-wrapped, power tilt-telescoping, sport steering wheel.  What a pleasure to drive, any time, any place.  In addition to the efficiency of the engine and 8-speed Sport Automatic transmission, an extensive range of BMW EfficientDynamics measures contribute to reducing fuel consumption and emissions.  Brake Energy Regeneration, engine Auto Start-Stop, on-demand operation of ancillary components, intelligent lightweight construction and extensive aerodynamic refinement collaborate to ensure maximum efficiency.

Cutting edge chassis technology gives the Grand Coupe the tools to provide both sporty handling and exceptional comfort.  The double-wishbone front suspension and the multi-link rear suspension are made predominately from aluminum.  The chassis is geared to the requirements of drivers with sporting intentions, although the dampers also respond sensitively to bumps in the road surface under high lateral acceleration.  The optional Active Roll Stabilization works in concert with the standard Dynamic Damper Control to offer you even more precise responses and perfectly flat cornering ability.  The electronically controlled shocks adapt to the road surface and your driving style to perfectly control the carís body motions.  Enhancing the incredible handling capabilities are two strut tower braces in the engine bay and the optional Integral Active Steering system that combines the Active Steering system for the front suspension with a steerable rear suspension.  Precisely harmonized steering angle movements of both front and rear wheels create a virtual lengthening or shortening of the carís wheelbase, which fosters both great high-seed stability and enhanced maneuverability for parking and slower city driving.

Further enhancing the driving sensations and personality is the Driving Dynamics Control including ECO PRO mode, COMFORT+, COMFORT SPORT, and SPORT+.  Affected parameters include the tuning of the throttle response, power steering boost assistance, shock absorbers, automatic transmission shift characteristics, and if equipped, roll stabilization and Integral Active Steering.  You tune the response to how you want you Gran Coupe to respond to your inputs.

Big powerful brakes stop the new Gran Coupe as fast as it accelerates.  Lightweight floating caliper brakes feature vented discs all-around.  Up front are 13.7 inch rotors clamped with four-piston calipers and 13.6 inch rotors clamped with a large single-piston caliper in the rear.  Enhancing braking power and control are ABS, Dynamic Stability Control, Dynamic Traction Control, Cornering Brake Control, Dynamic Brake Control, the Start-off-Assistant and the automatic Brake Drying function all work together to help you maintain control during severe braking maneuvers and when driving over wet or slick pavement.  My 640i Gran Coupe were shod with 20X8.5 inch front and 20X9 inch rear lightweight alloy wheels wrapped with 245/35ZR20 inch front and 275/30ZR20 inch Dunlop Sport Maxx GT low profile, high-performance tires.  This combination of innovative styling, powertrain and suspension geometry makes this new BMW 6-Series Grand Coupe an Ultimate Driving Machine.  But does the interior stand up to the challenge of the best BMW 6-Series Coupes and its competition-the Mercedes-Benz CLS and Audi A7?  After just seven-days behind the wheel, it certainly does!

The interior of the new Gran Coupe offers a driving experience defined by sportiness and luxury, and enhanced by a specially generated ambience.  The line of the roof pillars reproduces the carís arching roof form inside the car.  In the rear compartment, the enveloping interior typical of a coupe and comfortable seats offer excellent lateral support combined with generous freedom of movement and good visibility out the car.

The interior offers individually tailored seats for the drive, front passenger and rear passengers.  High-quality materials, carefully coordinated color and meticulously sculpted surfaces combine to produce an ambience defined by luxury, sweeping style and Teutonic functionality.  The signature BMW designed cockpit layout is superb.  The central section of the instrument panel, containing the iDrive systemís central display, the air vents and the controls for the magnificent Bang & Olufsen audio system and A/C are all angled slightly toward the driver.  The black panel instrument cluster combines the traditional sports car circular instruments with state-of-the-art display technology.  The navigation system, telephone and entertainment functions are operated using the more user-friendly iDrive control system.  The on-board monitor takes the form of a freestanding display with a flatsceen look.  The high-definition display measures 10.2 inches across and features a high-quality galvanized chrome surround.  The shallow depth of the display gives it a modern character.  The optional Luxury Seating Package adds ventilated multi-contour, active bucket seats, sunshades on both the rear side and rear windows and a four-zone climate control system with additional controls located between the rear seats.  The instrument panel, door trim and center console are also finished in Nappa leather with contrasting stitching when the Nappa leather option is selected.

Standard features not mentioned above include automatic start/stop ignition, Servotronic power steering, tire pressure monitor, rain-sensing wipers/washers, rear-view camera, auto dimming interior and exterior mirrors, dual cupholders front/rear, split fold-down rear seat, floor mats, moonroof, keyless entry, universal garage door opener, dual map lamps, Xenon adaptive headlights, foglamps, LED running lights, dual exhaust, 3-point safety belts for all positions with front load limiters/pretensioners, active headrests, anti-theft alarm system, ambient lighting, voice command, dynamic cruise control, automatic climate control, headlight washers, trip computer, run flat tires, front/side/rear crush zones and park distance control.

The all-new 2013 BMW 640i Gran Coupe has it all plus more to compete against its competition with the Mercedes-Benz CLS and Audi A7.  This new entry into the segment is the Ultimate Driving Machine!

COPYRIGHT: 2012: HARVEY SCHWARTZ

SPECIFICATIONS

Name: 2013 BMW 640i Gran Coupe

Price: $76,895.00 base

Engine: 4.0 liter, direct injected, turbocharged, 4-VANOS Valvetronic 6-cylinder all-alloy engine

Horsepower: 315 at 5,8-6,000rpm

Torque: 330 lb.ft. at 1,4-4,500rpm

Transmission: 8-speed automatic with paddle shifters

Suspension: Front: independent double wishbone

Rear: independent multi-link

Wheels/tires: Front: 20X8.5 lightweight alloy/Rear-20X9 inch lightweight alloy

Tires: Front: 245/35ZR20 Dunlop Maxx GT

Rear: 275/30ZR20 Dunlop Maxx GT

Brakes: Front: 13.7 vented with four-piston calipers

Rear: 13.6 inch vented with single-piston calipers

ABS, Cornering Brake Control, Dynamic Brake Control, Automatic Brake Drying

Legroom:  f/r-42.1/35.3 inches

Headroom:  f/r-40.6/37 inches

Curb weight:  4,101 lbs.