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Words: Tim Barnes-Clay
Featured in the June 2012 issue

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There are people who can light up a room with their presence. They are good at building and maintaining relationships. They establish rapport quickly and effortlessly. It seems like everybody is their best friend. This BMW is just like that – but in the car sense

An exceptional twin-turbocharged diesel powerplant, a newly developed chassis and a host of class-leading driver assistance technology ensures that the new 640d M Sport Coupé, on test here, is full of substance, while interior space and comfort have been enhanced.

Sat behind the chunky steering wheel, the car seems to exude a palpable sense of self-confidence and positive energy. The switchgear and controls are sturdy, and the sat nav and iDrive controller are simple to use. Motoring enthusiasts will be instinctively drawn to the German 2+2 because of its nearly indefinable quality. I guess the latest 640d Coupé is the automotive equivalent of a person with a magnetic personality. 

The third generation model features a sweeping roofline while the long bonnet, short overhangs, set-back passenger compartment, long wheelbase and flat waistline embody the typical proportions of a BMW coupé more than any other. From the rear, bulging wheel arches highlight the wide track of the car, alluding to its sporting performance and impressive road holding. Two-part rear light clusters give the typical BMW L-shape lights a particularly sporty, dynamic edge and, inside the units, two LED-powered light strips create an eye-catching night time look.

In the front, the passenger area is bordered by a surface curving elegantly from the armrest over the centre console, upwards and outwards into the instrument panel and then into the door trim, surrounding the front passenger area with a feeling of exclusive security. The BMW is fitted with lightweight seats with an integrated seatbelt system and easy entry function to the rear passenger compartment; a brief tap of a switch automatically moves the seat as far forward as possible.

Realistically, you won’t fit any long-legged or even average height adult passengers in the rear, but, for small children, the individual rear seats are ideal, providing ample shoulder and elbow room. The boot can accommodate 460 litres of luggage, equivalent to three golf bags or two medium cases and a flight case. To utilise the rear space further the rear seats can be specified with a through-loading ski hatch, allowing two pairs of skis to be transported with ease.

Of course, out on the asphalt is where the 640d really impresses; powering the beast is one of the world’s sportiest diesel engines – a 3.0-litre, twin-turbocharged, in-line six-cylinder unit, producing 309bhp at 4,400rpm and 465 lb-ft of pulling power. The car has great traction and it needs it: the 640d Coupé M Sport is capable of accelerating from zero to 62mph in 5.5 seconds, before topping out at an electronically limited 155mph. The BMW 640d Coupé is also fitted, as standard, with an eight-speed automatic transmission with auto start-stop and active air flaps behind the kidney grille. Such engineering expertise is the reason why the model offers zesty performance but can still achieve 51.4mpg on the combined cycle and record CO2 emissions of 145g/km.

The 6 Series Coupé went on sale in the UK in October 2011. BMW UK expects to sell around 1,100 models in its first full year, with the diesel powered version accounting for ninety per cent of sales.

FACTS AND FIGURES
Max speed: 155 mph
0-62 mph: 5.5 secs
Combined mpg: 51.4
Engine: 2993cc cc 6-cylinder twin-turbo diesel
Max power (bhp): 309 at 4,400 rpm
Max torque (lb/ft): 465 at 1,500 rpm
CO2: 145 g/km
Price: £66,745 on the road

Comments Add your thoughts.

  1. Mark King June 26, 2012

    A well written, concise, interesting and informative article. It answers many of the questions that the average buyer will almost certainly want to ask. No hard sell, no bias, no complicated jargon. You get a strong sense that you actually trust what you are reading.

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