From £59,505
Thunderous coupe is hugely accomplished despite its weight. Soundtrack intoxicating, but numb steering and a £20k hike over the M5 make it hard to justify

Our Verdict

The 6-series shares its plaform with models as diverse as the 5-series and Rolls-Royce Ghost

The BMW 6 Series is a superbly accomplished car, unless you’re a driving enthusiast

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    First drive review: BMW M6 Coupe

    Thunderous coupe is hugely accomplished despite its weight. Soundtrack intoxicating, but numb steering and a £20k hike over the M5 make it hard to justify

What is it?: 


A fat 552 horsepower. Earth-shifting torque. A 189mph top speed. The BMW M6 is the fastest two-door car BMW has ever made, serves a magnificently indulgent sound-track and provides the kind of detail features that enthusiasts love to linger over. 

It’s a close relative of the M5 saloon of course, sharing the same 552bhp twin-turbo V8, seven-speed dual-clutch transmission and chassis hardware, although the body has been strengthened and cleaves a cleaner path through the air.

What's it like?: 

Beef this car has plenty of in terms of power and mass, the M6 Coupe weighing a 1850kg despite its alloy skinned doors, carbon roof, composite front wings, alloy suspension and this example’s optional carbon-ceramic brakes. 

That weight has an inevitable impact, even if this BMW carries its heft with remarkable composure. 

On the chicanes of the Ascari Raceway it flaunts amazing body control as it darts from apex to apex, and manages equally flop-free responses when you stick its tail sideways, change direction at high speeds, spear a kerb or slam on the brakes. That’s in sinew-stiffening sport plus, but even in comfort, its damping is always controlled. 

You can also shift the steering’s weighting across three modes, but in none does its stylish rim provide much info about grip and slip-angles, this tactile shortfall a disappointment in such a driver-oriented car. 

So is the sometimes surprising lack of response from the transmission, even in the most hectic modes – often, it’s better to paddle your way to performance.

Should I buy one?: 

These shortfalls, plus a ride likely to turn busy on British surfaces in sport, make a faintly less satisfying device of the M6 than it ought to be. Especially when it costs over £20k more than an M5, and much the same for a nimbler, if slower, 911.

BMW M6 Coupe

Price: £93,820; 0-62mph: 4.2sec; Top speed: 155mph (189mph delimited); Economy: 28.5mpg; Co2: 232g/km; Kerbweight: 1850kg; Engine: V8, 4395cc; Power: 552bhp at 6000rpm; Torque: 502lb ft at 1500rpm; Gearbox: 7-spd dual-clutch


Join the debate

Comments
23

21 June 2012

i think tthe only reason why bmw are making this car is because of the Jagk

BJN

22 June 2012

Never understood the appeal of  the original M6, don't see it in this one either.

Why pay thousands more for what is in effect a far uglier and less practical M5?

 

 

22 June 2012

JagFury wrote:

i[sic] think tthe[sic] only reason why[sic] bmw[sic] are making this car is because of the Jagk[sic]

Yes, they want to give prospective owners the option of having modern technology (M6) as opposed to early '00s technology ("Jagk").

21 June 2012

This car leaves me completely cold. Expensive, bland to look at and, well, completely depressing. Where's the character of this thing? If you spend £100k on a car, you at least want it to be remotely appealing.

22 June 2012

The lack of responses to Mr Bremner's short but well written article would suggest that Fidji5's view is widely shared. Personally, without the rear seat space offered by the M5 I find this package redundant - but regardless of the concept, it's just disgracefully heavy.

 

22 June 2012

 

This car is very good. I love it.

22 June 2012

Would not have to spend much more to have a V8 Bentley Continental GT much more panache and character .

Sorry but the price of the BMW is too much for what it is . For that kind of money I would want a car that turns heads this doesnt .

22 June 2012

Not really surprised about the lukewarm review. With the sole exception of the latest 3-series, Autocar has declared itself more than unimpressed with all other BMW models, including the M5 and the 1M (which have been highly praised elsewhere, I hasten to add).

What is a bit odd about this review is that on one hand Bremner goes on about "the amazing body control" and "controlled damping even in comfort setting", but then throws in a hypothetical and contradictory nitpick right at the very end with "ride likely to turn busy on British surfaces in sport"!

There are valid question marks against the M6 though. Mainly the sheer mass (why can't BMW make its sporty models leaner, like they have with the latest 3?) and also if it's really worth £15k over the M5. Otherwise, I like the look of this beast.

22 June 2012

Overdrive wrote:

With the sole exception of the latest 3-series, Autocar has declared itself more than unimpressed with all other BMW models, including the M5 and the 1M (which have been highly praised elsewhere, I hasten to add)

If you're looking for some comic book journalism, have a look at their new "Top 5" in each category segment at the bottom of the Autocar home page. The XF is ranked ahead of the 5 -seres, E-Class and A6 in 'Mid-size execs'. So bizarre it's funny!

22 June 2012

"These shortfalls, plus a ride likely to turn busy on British surfaces in sport,"

Even as an M3 owner, like most of the other posters, this car doesn't really do much for me, but I just found this a strange comment.  Surely that's why you have a switchable system.  On smooth roads (or even tracks, not that many M6 owners are likely to take their car on a track, but they have the option) Sport will be great.  On normal country roads you can leave it in Comfort, and when going for it, have the Normal setting linked to the M button on the steering wheel.

That's what I have in the M3 and it works brilliantly.  As far as I know, the system's always active, so even in Normal, it will firm up the suspension when necessary, but revert to a more supple setting when appropriate.  If the road's really smooth, all I have to do is press the EDC button once to access full on Sport mode.

That's the beauty about this sort of thing, it might seem a pain on a brief test, but as an owner, I love having the flexibility to change the whole feel of the car with a few simple settings.

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