Piston Heads recently had the opportunity to test drive the new 2012 BMW 650i Convertible. Attending a manufacturer’s event in South Africa, the UK publication shares with us their impressions of the new flagship convertible.
While not the most comprehensive review we have ever seen, and a bit unusual from a story-telling, the test drive review by Piston Heads still points out some of the good and bad aspects of the 6 Series Cabriolet.
“Fortunately the 6 Series convertible makes nice brrrm-brrrm noises all by itself thanks to the twin-turbocharged 407hp V8 that BMW has decided to launch the model with. Sometimes, anyway. Perhaps the car is a little too refined for PH tastes, as most of the time the engine is barely audible with the roof down. But sticking your foot in the carpet does elicit an aural reward in the shape(?) of a throbbing woofly-burble.
However it sounds, the engine delivers power seamlessly up to its peak output at 6400rpm and, with 443lb ft available between 1750rpm and 4500rpm, the most obvious reward from booting it is a serious bit of pace. BMW reckons 0-62mph takes 5.0secs with the impressively seamless 8-speed auto gearbox, which for a car weighing 60kgs short of two metric tons is no mean feat.
That said, as PH has recently handed back a 500hp V10-powered old-shape M6 from the PH long-term fleet, and our driving companion on the trip is used to racing a 600hp+ Porsche 911, we couldn’t in all honesty say the 650i’s acceleration felt electrifying. It’s unarguably strong on paper though, so perhaps it will feel more urgent against the UK’s more constricted roadscape. We played with the gearbox’s manual shifters a little before giving in to the greater experience and smoother technique of the unit’s own internal control systems. Seemingly, there’s little point or pleasure to be had from trying to out-do the auto.
As a sporty driver’s car though, the 650i may leave you a little cold. No question, the chassis is extremely competent and can cover ground in a manner that belies its bulk. The car corners flat and confidently at high speed, it seems profoundly grippy, and demonstrates an underlying poise and stability that is always reassuring on the road – especially when Sport mode is dialled up on the Dynamic Drive Control system, hardening up the dampers and increasing roll stabilisation.”