Cars That I Hate – Episode 3: BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe

BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC) 14 photos
Photo: BMW
BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe (M235i xDrive GC)
Not all cars deserve to be loved. In fact, only a select few are worthy of the average petrolhead's energy, and the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe is but one ride that deserves as much hate as possible for multiple reasons.
Reason 1: It's not a real BMW or 2 Series. You see, the Munich auto marque tricky advertising may fool some into thinking it is a longer version of the otherwise hot 2 Series Coupe. However, it's not, as its name is the only thing it shares with the rear-wheel drive model.

Instead of building it on the same CLAR platform, which also underpins the 3 Series, 4 Series, 5 Series, 6 Series, X3, X4, and others, it utilizes the UKL2 architecture. Thus, it is the same car beneath the skin as the latest BMW 1 Series, 2 Series Active Tourer minivan, X1, X2, and MINI Countryman, to name but some.

Although it supports implementing the brand's xDrive all-wheel drive system, this construction is only used on front-wheel drive models. Therefore, purists (including yours truly) will never buy a 2 Series Gran Coupe or a modern-day 1er. To be honest, you'd be much better off with a slightly bigger 3 Series, which starts at $44,500 in the 330i Sedan in our market, or $46,500 should you want it with all-wheel drive.

BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe \(M235i xDrive GC\)
Photo: BMW
The premium compact sports sedan uses a 2.0L gasoline unit with 255 hp (259 ps/190 kW) and 295 lb-ft (400 Nm) of torque. The base 228i Gran Coupe comes from $38,400 with front-wheel drive and $40,400 with all-wheel drive, and also packs a 2.0-liter four-pot, albeit with less power. The unit develops 228 hp (231 ps/170 kW) and 258 lb-ft (350 Nm).

Picking up an M235i xDrive Gran Coupe means paying at least $48,300, plus destination. This model tops the family and is closely related to the M135i xDrive hot hatch. Power comes from a 2.0L mill making 302 hp (306 ps/225 kW) and 332 lb-ft (450 Nm). The rivaling Mercedes-AMG CLA 35 Coupe (another ride you should stay away from), which is also a front-biased AWD machine, comes from $54,950 and uses a 2.0L engine rated at 302 hp (306 ps/225 kW) and 295 lb-ft (400 Nm).

Reason 2: It's ugly. You see, four-door coupes can be quite spectacular to look at. Mercedes' CLA is one of the best-looking cars in its class. What lies beneath the skin is a different story that puts it in the same 'do not buy it' class as the 2 Series Gran Coupe. However, the 2er GC is one of the most controversial-looking modern-day Bimmers, and that's despite not featuring the 4er's bucktooth grille. It seems BMW's design team wanted to shock when they came up with the styling, yet they got the proportions all wrong.

Reason 3: It's not good to drive. All (real) Bimmers tend to oversteer, yet due to its front-wheel drive layout, albeit with xDrive assistance in certain models, including the range-topping M235i xDrive, the 2er GC understeers. Some may argue that so does the 1 Series, and the same applies to the X1 and X2. This is one good reason to avoid these models, which aren't real BMWs, after all.

BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe \(M235i xDrive GC\)
Photo: BMW

Reason 4: The Benjamins. We already covered this topic a few paragraphs ago, yet it deserves a few more lines since it is an important aspect. We cannot stress this enough, but if you're shopping for a ~$40K Bimmer, you should throw in a couple of thousands more and get the 3 Series. After all, you cannot go wrong with it, as it is one of the best sports sedans in its class.

Reason 5: Its owners. No sports car fan would ever be caught dead in a 2 Series Gran Coupe with their name written on the dotted line. However, there could be an exception here, and that's catching a great deal on an M235i xDrive and buying it well below the MSRP. But even so, there's nothing stopping you from selling it and picking something else instead (ahem, 3er). Plus, the offering gets vast once surfing the used car market for an older real Bimmer.

And speaking of old Bimmers, what's wrong with an F10 5 Series (besides the higher maintenance) that costs a fraction of a new 2er GC? Or a G30, its successor? Or an F30, which is the old 3er? Or the G20, the one that succeeded it? You could pick these up, and you'd still have a lot of money left for maintenance, gasoline, and insurance, and you'd also get more car for the money.

Thus, remember next time when you're considering a 2 Series Gran Coupe (you haven't actually considered it, have you?) that there are far better alternatives out there. And in the end, what's wrong with a mainstream compact that costs less?
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About the author: Cristian Gnaticov
Cristian Gnaticov profile photo

After a series of unfortunate events put an end to Cristian's dream of entering a custom built & tuned old-school Dacia into a rally competition, he moved on to drive press cars and write for a living. He's worked for several automotive online journals and now he's back at autoevolution after his first tour in the mid-2000s.
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