The Ultimate Gentleman’s Express.
I can easily recall seeing the press release for the M6 Gran Coupe during last year’s Autoshow season and being drawn towards the images like a moth to a flame. At least to my eyes, the M6 GC is the most beautiful BMW there is, hands down. But photos don’t do it justice. Seeing it in the flesh, all squat and swollen in Frozen Silver livery is another matter entirely. This is a car that stops people in their tracks as much as it stops traffic. While tooling around downtown Toronto I almost had to remind other drivers to pay attention and pry their gazes away from the M6’s seductive sheet metal.
- Timelessly beautiful
- Monumental performance
- Can play the efficiency card when asked
- Brittle ride
- Options alarmingly inflate the price
- None too practical for a big car
- If you like showing off at the track and pulling up to fancy restaurants. BMW’s M6 Gran Coupe is for you.
Those looks do come at a price. This, despite being a big car, is not the car you schlepp away for a long weekend with- the combination of smallish trunk, 2+2 seating configuration and low roofline mean you’ll reach for the keys to the station wagon long before this baby. If you are buying this car with the hope of enlisting it into carpool duty, do yourself a favor and look elsewhere. As good as 560 horsepower is at terrifying school children it’s a bit much for the run to the classroom, even if it guarantees punctuality.
Aesthetics and body style notwithstanding, the M6 Gran Coupe is pretty much identical to the M5 and M6 coupe/cabriolet, all of which we drove earlier this year. That means the same malevolence out of the 4.4 litre S63 twin turbo V8, the same snappy shifts from the 7-speed dual clutch gearbox all riding on the same sharp looking 20 inch rolling stock. The major difference here is that our Gran Coupe tester wore gargantuan carbon ceramic brake rotors with forearm-sized calipers. With this kind of braking hardware you’ll pretty much never need to worry about fade, (even of they do tend to squeak at times) a nice thing when you’re storming into a corner with an irresponsible amount of entry speed. This piece of mind doesn’t come cheap; expect to shell out $6,750 for these anchors. Most folks who end up buying this car will be OK with the standard steel rotors, although they do add more unsprung weight in the corners which will have an modestly adverse effect on turn in and handling.
Helping you look good when things get twisty is BMW’s Active M differential. Aside from being tasked with managing the colossal output of the V8, it helps ensure the wheel with the most grip can exploit the power being sent to it. Basically, it makes you look like a hero. Be glad it’s there.
You might be thinking that this sounds like a great car, so great that you might order two of them. When you consider that the M6 GC starts at $127,000 and can end up at $160,950 like our tester (and beyond) your enthusiasm could be tempered somewhat.
I’m still not a fan of the goofy engine sounds, the aloof nature the way it goes about its business when you’re driving it and the fact that it’s incomprehensibly high performance capabilities are all but wasted most of the time when driving on the street. Despite all that, I still love this car.
2013 BMW M6 Gran Coupe- Specifications
- Price as tested: $170,700
- Body Type: 4-door, 2+2 passenger sedan
- Powertrain Layout: Front engine/rear-wheel drive
- Engine: 4.4-litre V8 twin turbo, DOHC, 32 valves
- Horsepower: 560 @ 6000-7000 rpm
- Torque (lb-ft): 500 @ 1500-5750 rpm
- Transmission: 7-speed dual-clutch automatic
- Curb weight: 2,045 kg (4,508 lbs)
- Fuel consumption: City: 13.2L/100 km (18 mpg)
- Highway: 8.6L/100 km (27 mpg)