BMW 2 Series Coupe: Don’t Overlook or Underestimate This Bavarian Gem!

BMW 2 Series Coupe 33 photos
Photo: BMW media
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Any brief driving session at the wheel of a BMW 2 Series Coupe will let you longing for more. It is not a new model, yet, considering the various recent evolutions in the BMW range and style, we thought it would be a good idea to remind you about this quintessential Bavarian object. For certain reasons, it is still there, available to be bought.
The BMW 2 Series Coupe is the spiritual descendant of the BMW 02 Series produced between 1966 and 1977. This was a range of compact cars with only two doors based on a shortened technical platform of the so-called BMW Neue Klasse sedan (ancestor of the current BMW 3 Series).

The Neue Klasse and the BMW 02 were the model series that saved BMW from bankruptcy during the sixties. Without those, the 5 Series, 7 Series, SUVs and the rest of the BMW range would have not existed today. That’s why buying a BMW 2 Series nowadays also means getting a pretty important piece of historical heritage.

BMW 2 Series Coupe
Photo: BMW press
Beyond that, the main reason why it should be bought resides in its faultless sporty character. And here comes the confusion risk: not everything they call nowadays a “2 Series” or a “compact class car” in Bavaria is able to go like a BMW 2 Series Coupe.

The longitudinally mounted engine sitting a bit behind the front axle and the native rear-wheel-drive are specific only to the 2 Series Coupe and to its convertible version. The BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe, 2 Series Active Tourer, 2 Series Grand Tourer and the crossover X2, they all have native front-wheel-drive and transverse mounted engines, like most of the compact class automobiles assembled worldwide.


Inside the BMW 2 Series Coupe you can see the classic example of a cockpit dedicated to sporty driving. Its functionality and ergonomics are impeccable. Looking at the dashboard, you start to feel that digital instrument panels used for all the newer models are just a kind of trendy gimmick. The multimedia display is well placed, on the top of the dash. It is easy to have a glance at it without moving your line of sight far away from the road.

BMW 2 Series Coupe
Photo: BMW press
Even if touching it supposes to stretch and move a bit up in the seat, this isn’t really necessary because you can use the big round knob placed between the seats to access the menus. What else you may need during your trip? The audio and heating/ventilation are located on clearly distinct areas of the center console and the button allowing you to select the driving modes is just near the transmission’s selector.

It seems that the guys at BMW thought everything right. This is confirmed by the seat’s configuration. The upholstery is rather firm and their shape was defined to keep you stable and comfy in there when driving fast through some tight curves.

Coming to the inside dimensions, the BMW 2 Series Coupe is not insisting about giving you an impression of an airy interior. There is enough space to feel OK in front, and, after all, who cares seriously about those who have to stay on the rear bench of a compact coupe? However, there seating conditions there are not awfully bad.

The chromatic treatment of the cabin is the sober/professional kind with some discrete nuanced accents. It contains its own message, something like: “there are some compact cars made for a funny life, but we’re not joking here. And you should appreciate this.”

Find yours

The Bayerische Motoren Werke AG is well-known for some its straight-six engines. You can find some of those under the hood of the BMW 2 Series Coupe as well.

BMW 2 Series Coupe
Photo: BMW press
However, at the lowest level of the range, they offer you just a half of a straight-six: yes, the BMW 218i Coupe has a small, 1.5 liter 3-cylinder turbo engine able to provide 136 PS. This isn’t a lazy car and its engine sounds quite raucous, but don’t expect it to perform in any kind of sporty manner.

Dynamic satisfaction first comes at the level of the 4-cylinder engines. The BMW 220i (184 PS) can be considered the “advanced trainer” of the bunch, while the BMW 230i (252 PS) is already a capable sportscar. For those who would like qualified sportiness, the M240i (340 PS) brings in the nerve and refinement of the 3.0-liter straight-six Bavarian engines.

And then we get to the BMW M2 (370 PS). Special situation: they don’t produce these anymore, so it is not possible to buy one as new right now. Yet, this car is worthy to be mentioned here. In fact, we are talking about a kind of downsized BMW M4/F82: technically, they share the straight-six engine (TwinPower Turbo, Double-Vanos/Valvetronic, High Precision Direct Injection, 2979 cc, but a bit less powerful in the M2), the front and rear axles, the steering system and the M active differential. Surprisingly, the BMW M2 feels OK as an automobile for the everyday use and you won’t get bored at all at its wheel while driving on a racetrack. There was also a M2 Competition version, counting on 410 PS, and an M2 CS, with no less than 450 PS.

BMW 2 Series Coupe
Photo: BMW press
Because the BMW 220i Coupe is the most convenient choice here, we will mention its price: 37,250 euro (Germany). The M240i BMW is priced at 51,700 euro. Funny, the BMW M2 Competition is not anymore available in Europe, yet you can still get a new one in the USA starting at $58,900. But in the USA they don’t have any other version of the 2 Series Coupe.


There is nothing equivalent to the BMW 2 Series Coupe available as new because no other manufacturer in the world builds compact vehicles based on a typical sportscar technical platform. The closest 2+2 RWD coupe on the market in this segment are the Subaru BRZ/Toyota 86 twins.
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