If you are impressed by physical size, prepare to be very impressed. “Crikey, that’s big,” was the first impression of the neighbour who was present when the man from BMW handed me the keys to the 8 Series Gran Coupe. He’s right. It’s huge.
5.1 metres long and 2.1 metres wide, to be precise. That’s wider than the famous 1959 ‘Pink Cadillac’, and almost as long. If you can imagine how vast one of those still seems on British roads, you’ll get an idea of the visual heft of the Gran Coupe.
The marketeers call it a four-door coupé; you might baulk at that, and prefer to think of this as a particularly long, low four-door saloon. Either way, the Gran Coupe sets out to be a grand tourer par excellence, in the vein of the two-door 8 Series – but with more room for passengers, or indeed, for the kids.
This is also our first crack at an 8 Series with the entry-level – if you can call it that – petrol engine. How does it stack up? Read on to find out – don’t forget to register or login to find out our decisive verdict on the new Gran Coupe.
Pros: Opulent interior, fabulous engine, exciting to drive
Cons: Unsettled ride, expensive to buy or finance, not that well equipped
What’s under the skin?
The 840i we’ve got here is endowed with a 3.0-litre, six-cylinder petrol engine. It’s turbocharged with a twin-scroll turbo, which effectively means the turbo can activate more quickly at lower engine speeds, then switch to a higher-boost mode the faster you go, thus giving lots of power but doing away with the delayed response that you sometimes get with bigger turbos.