Currently reading: 2021 BMW 2 Series Coupe: best look yet at RWD model
BMW's two-door 2 Series will retain rear-wheel drive by using different platform to its front-wheel-drive siblings, and goes on sale next year
2 mins read
6 August 2020

BMW will next year reintroduce its smallest two-door model, the 2 Series Coupé, and new spy shot images give us a revealing look at its production styling.

Due to be produced at the firm’s San Luis Potosí plant in Mexico, the 2 Series Coupé is known internally under the codename G42 and is scheduled for an unveiling during 2021. 

Significantly, the new coupé shares very little of its architecture with the 2 Series Gran Coupé as it will be rear-wheel drive. Shunning BMW’s front-driven FAAR platform, it will instead utilise an evolution of its versatile CLAR platform. As well as underpinning BMW’s largest saloons and SUVs, the architecture is also found underneath the current Z4 and its Toyota Supra sibling. 

That allows for the G42 2 Series to use a similar mechanical layout to today’s model, with a longitudinal engine mounting instead of the transverse layout found in the four-door 2 Series. 

Heavy camouflage means it’s difficult to draw many conclusions from these new images beyond the overall profile being that of a classic two-door, four-seat coupé. Visible links to the shape of the latest 4 Series are apparent, in particular the long bonnet and wide rear stance, although at the front BMW appears to have grafted the face from the 2 Series Gran Coupé onto it. 

Details of what will power the new 2 Series variant at launch have yet to be confirmed, although expect to see three- and four-cylinder petrols, and possibly the return of a diesel, for the mainstream models. The main reason the new 2 Series Coupé is RWD, however, is that it allows BMW to reheat the much-loved recipe of the current M2

Unlike the four-cylinder M135i and M235i Gran Coupé, Autocar understands that the full-fat M2, expected in 2022, will keep a six-cylinder powertrain. Specifically, it will use a detuned version of the S58 3.0-litre unit found in the BMW X3 M and X4 M, and soon to be offered in the latest M3 and M4. 

Insiders hint that the M2 will offer at least 420bhp in its standard form - a 16bhp increase over today’s M2 Competition - to usurp the 416bhp Mercedes-AMG A45 S hot hatch. However, the CLAR platform provides the basis for a 48V electrical architecture, meaning the M2 is likely to feature mild-hybrid technology during its life cycle.

As before, the M2 should also retain a manual gearbox option, along with select variants of the standard 2 Series Coupé line-up. However, there won’t be a new generation of the 2 Series Convertible alongside this as BMW looks to streamline its model portfolio and focus resources on electrification.


BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé M235i 2020 UK review

New BMW M2 to spearhead hotter junior M line-up

First drive: 2020 BMW M3 prototype 


Find an Autocar review

Read our review

Car review
BMW 2 Series Coupé

The BMW 2 Series Coupé marks a successful return of the 1 Series Coupé. Overall it is a more compelling package than before but can it drive buyers away from the Audi TT and conventional hatchbacks?

Join the debate


6 July 2020

This will be a big step backwards compared to the current car.  The top of the range model (not counting the M2) will have a four cylinder engine instead of a six.  It won't sound as good and won't be as quick.  It will also have the new dashboard which is horrible to look at.

Don't believe me?   Check comparison videos on Youtube of the M140i and its replacement the M135i.  Guaranteed that they will do the same thing with the 2 series.

if you want a decent 2 series coupe, get the M240i while it is still on sale.

8 July 2020

Disagree, the new 2 will be based on the CLAR platform. Rumours and indications are that it will not go the way of the 1 series and will retain the B58 powered M240i as the top model (other than the M2 of course). I own the current M240i and it's mostly been a great car. I have had to spend a bit of cash to rid of a few niggles... susension upgrade and LSD mainly. I am looking forward to it, I just hope they don't ruin the looks.

6 July 2020
I agree with your last point re current M240i. The only thing that let's it down are the leather seats which seem very "standard" in appearance...
I'd be hard pushed to choose a 2 or 3 year old M240i over a 4 or 5 year old 435D for roughly the same dosh. The interior is heaps better.
The new 2 series must have a better interior for my money.

6 July 2020

If it's based on the CLAR structure then it is likely the 240i will retain the six cylinder engine. Unfortunately it's also likely to be absolutely hideous to look at.

8 July 2020

I would agree. I own one and whilst I find the seats comforatble, it's hardly the highest quality leather and they do look a bit standard. I wouldn't say it was too bad though, I've seen a lot wors....but it's definitley time for a major update. 

16 July 2020

Im glad BMW are doing another 2 door 2 series but surprised they are investing in a stand alone model like this when all their rivals have ditched the idea of a 2/3 door car and BMW have the Gran Coupe and 4 series coupe already. Hopefully the gamble will pay off because of the lack of direct competition


16 July 2020

please don't look like the new 4 series, please don't look like the new 4 series, please don't look like the new 4 series, please don't look like the new 4 series, please don't look like the new 4 series.......

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review