What's the used BMW 6 Series coupe like?
A car designed for grand touring requires a big boot for luggage, comfortable seats, a quiet cabin and a large fuel tank for shrugging off the miles without time-consuming pit stops. Thankfully, the BMW 6 Series ticks all of those boxes and more besides.
There isn’t a bad engine in the 6 Series range, but our recommended variant is the 640d, which uses a 309bhp 3.0-litre diesel to provide a great blend of power, smooth running and economy. There is also a 3.0-litre petrol engine in the 640i for those who don’t want a diesel, and a powerful 4.4-litre petrol V8 in the 650i. The range-topping M6, meanwhile, is enormously fast thanks to its 552bhp twin-turbo V8.
Every version of the 6 Series comes well-equipped, with the 'entry-level' SE getting 18in alloy wheels, two-zone climate control, cruise control, leather seats (the front ones are heated), parking sensors front and rear and sat-nav.
Sport is the entry point for the 650i and comes with 19in wheels and Comfort front seats with adjustable lumbar support. The M Sport comes with sportier exterior styling but doesn’t have any useful additional equipment. The M6 has adaptive LED headlights, four exhaust pipes, bigger brakes, a carbon fibre roof, an upgraded stereo and ‘M’ styling tweaks inside and out.
To drive, the 6 Series is effortless. Its eight-speed automatic gearbox, which is standard on all but the M6 (which gets a seven-speed dual-clutch auto), flicks through ratios with alacrity.
The 6 Series is not a light car by any means, and it cannot fully disguise its girth in tight bends. But in its natural environment on faster A roads and motorways, the car feels planted and deals with bumps well. If you find one with the optional adjustable dampers, so much the better, because the standard car’s ride can be a little unsettled over broken surfaces. This gets worse if you go for an M Sport model, because of its bigger wheels and sports suspension.
All things considered, though, the 6 Series is a wonderful cruiser and is ideally suited to long commutes and driving holidays. It may not be as good to drive as the Jaguar XK, but it is a lot cheaper to run in diesel form, and it is a much more practical car.
Indeed, the closest rival to the 6 Series comes from within the BMW range: the 6 Series Gran Coupé, which is a four-door version of the same car. It's a better bet if you need to carry four people regularly, not only thanks to the extra doors, but also because rear leg room in the two-door 6 Series isn’t great for taller passengers.
Having said that, if you only need space for a driver and one other passenger, the front of the two-door version has a palatial amount of room. The boot, while having a slightly restrictive opening, is rather deep and will easily swallow enough luggage for two on a fortnight's vacation.
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