The new generation of the compact 2 Series Coupe is essentially one of the very few puristic models in the BMW portfolio. After the Bavarians decided to underpin most of their compact vehicles with front-wheel drive platform, the G42 model series is now the sole model in the low-end lineup to stay true to the brand’s core values: rear-wheel drive, a perfect 50:50 weight axle balance and legendary 6-cylinder inline powerplants.
Inspired by the precise chassis and powertrain technology of the controversial 4 Series Coupe (G22), engineers have brought the new 2 Series Coupe to an unprecedented level of sharpness and dynamism. Thus, to fans’ exhilaration, the G42 is the Bimmer that they have been waiting for so long: compact, lightweight, fast, precise and extremely agile.
Powertrain Technology: New engines, 8-speed Steptronic gearbox, xDrive and efficiency
The new BMW 2 Series Coupe is unveiled with a host of new petrol and diesel engines with improved efficiency and power delivery. The entry-level proposition is represented by the new BMW 220i / 230i Coupe with rear-wheel traction. The petrol-fed, four-pot engines boasts a peak output of 135 kW / 184 PS (181 hp). BMW engineers have taken extensive measures to minimize emissions. New solutions are premiered on the G42 2 Series and include the cylinder head with integrated exhaust manifold and split-cooling system for the crankcase.
The 2,000 cc unit powering the 220i Coupe also features the latest version of BMW TwinPower Turbo technology with twin-scroll turbocharging and the High Precision Injection system, which is capable of sending fuel into the combustion chambers at pressures of up to 350 bar. The torque delivered by the 4-cylinder gasoline engine reaches 300 Nm (221 lb-ft), while the 0-100 km/h is covered in 7.5 seconds. The new BMW 220i Coupé returns average fuel consumption figures of 6.8 – 6.3 liters per 100 kilometers (41.5 – 44.8 mpg) with CO2 emissions of 155 – 144 grams per kilometer in the WLTP cycle.
Starting Summer 2022, an additional petrol variant will arrive in the portfolio. The upcoming 230i Coupe with rear-wheel drive will become available and feature the same integrated exhaust manifold design. The peak output delivered by the engine powering the new 230i Coupe reaches 180 kW / 245 PS (242 hp). For an extra dose of dynamism, this version will also offer the possibility to be optionally specced with several features such as the M Sport rear differential.
For the diesel fans, the new 2 Series Coupe will also be offered as 220d model right from the start of sales scheduled for upcoming Fall. For the first time, this engine fitted to the compact two-door model features dedicated solutions for reducing consumption and enhancing efficiency. Already known from other units, the 48-volt mild hybrid technology will help take the mechanical burden of the engine by means of an electric, integrated starter-generator unit delivering 8 kW / 11 PS (11 hp).
The 2.0-liter diesel engine develops maximum output of 140 kW/190 PS (187 hp) and a peak torque of 400 Nm (295 lb-ft). It now employs two-stage turbocharging and further developed common rail direct injection. In terms of performance, the new 220d Coupe is pretty poised, sprinting from standstill to 100 km/h in just 6.9 seconds. The engine is also frugal and efficient, so that the 220d boasts some impressive consumption figures: 5.1 – 4.7 liters / 100 kilometers (55.4 – 60.1 mpg).
The new range-topping version is the M240i xDrive Coupe, which has been completely reengineered to the likes of the M440i xDrive Coupe. The straight-six petrol engine develops an output of 275 kW / 374 PS (368 hp), corresponding to a gain of 25 kW / 34 PS (33 hp) over the preceding M240i variant. Other impressive performance figures include the peak torque of 500 Nm (369 lb-ft) fully available across a broad rev range between 1,900 and 5,000 rpm.
Being destined for an M model, the B58 unit powering the new M240i xDrive boasts several motor-racing inspired measures, such as the aluminum crankcase with closed-deck construction and the likewise alloy cylinder head. The crankshaft is manufactured out of forged steel, whereas pistons and con rods are weight-optimized. There is also the BMW M TwinPower Turbo technology with twin-scroll turbocharging, together with the High Precision Injection, the VALVETRONIC variable valve timing and the Double-VANOS variable camshaft time for intake and exhaust sides.
The 3.0-liter inline engine is capable of accelerating the new M240i xDrive Coupe from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.3 seconds. In terms of fuel consumption, the current flagship of the new 2 Series Coupe family posts values of 8.8 – 8.1 liters per 100 kilometers (32.1 – 34.9 mpg), with CO2 emissions coming in at 200 –185 grams/km.
For all the engine variants, the signature kidney grille, with its elongated, wide shape inspired by the G29 Z4 model series, is fitted with active slats that serves both an aerodynamical and cooling purpose. When the engine needs a breath of fresh air, the vertical louvres open to let the flow towards the radiator. Under normal circumstances, the slats are closed forming a grille panel which also acts to improve the aerodynamic drag coefficient (Cd).
With respect to the transmission, no 6-speed manual choices are to be found on offer. All power versions of the new 2 Series Coupe come standardly equipped with the 8-speed Steptronic gearbox, whereas the high-end model is fitted from the factory with the more dynamic Steptronic Sport transmission (optional on the other engine variants), complete with gear shift paddles, a Launch Control unit and a Sprint function. The gearbox has been improved as its control unit is able to take into account data on route topography and the traffic situation supplied by the navigation system and driver assistance systems. This helps reduce the number of unnecessary gear changes, which might otherwise affect overall efficiency.
Last, but not least important, besides the classic RWD chassis, BMW also offers the xDrive as a standard equipment on the brand new M240i Coupe and is expected to make it available as an option on other engine variants as well starting 2022, such as 220d and 230i. The BMW xDrive all-wheel drive traction system installed on the M240i has a touch rear-wheel drive to it, as in normal situations, the car is basically rear-drive, also thanks to fully variable torque distribution between the backward wheels.
Furthermore, to increase stability and improve grip in all situations, the BMW xDrive system uses an electronically controlled multi-plate clutch in the transfer case interlinked with the powertrain and chassis systems to distribute power between the front and rear wheels as required by the road conditions.
Complementing the BMW xDrive chassis and the M Sport suite of equipment for the M240i xDrive is the M Sport rear differential. Its electronically controlled, fully variable locking function in the rear differential optimizes traction and directional stability, as well as agility and cornering dynamics to particularly good effect.
New weight-saving measures with an eye to rigidity and safety
The body and chassis of the new BMW 2 Series Coupe are manufactured out of an array of materials such as hot-stamped steels and aluminum alloys for the passenger cell, as well as additional multi-phase steels for extra reinforcement. Taking on the footsteps of the G22 4 Series, the new G42 model generation too employs die-cast aluminum spring struts and an engine side member made from extruded aluminum profiles that help shave off important kilos from the front section of the car. Furthermore, the use of aluminum for the construction of the engine bonnet and front side panels all alone saves around 10 kilograms of the total kerb weight of the new 2 Series Coupe.
In addition to the extremely rigid passenger cell and highly resilient load-bearing structures, the new compact coupe from Munich is ensuring high-end levels of passive safety thanks to the integrated safety electronics which deploy the restraint systems in the right sequence, at the right time and the right amount of force. The new G42 2 Series is also equipped with an active bonnet that maximizes the pedestrian protection in case of impact, by using pyrotechnic actuators that lift the hood to create more deformation space.
The new M240i xDrive Coupe range-topper boasts additional struts supporting the front axle carriers on the side sills, while a hydraulically damped tension strut mount minimizes vibration and oscillation. Furthermore, the new aluminum suspension arms and swivel bearings reduce unsprung mass.
At the rear end, the five-link axle helps ensure precise wheel location thanks to the stiffness of the subframe and suspension arms. Besides offering increased agility, the dual elastic bearing of the rear axle also enhances ride comfort. The new generation of wheel bearings employed by the G42 2 Series further helps bring the weight down by around 2.7 kilograms and, at the same time, boasts friction levels reduced by up to 45% versus the F22 2 Series.
Rigorously-developed chassis, suspension and brake technology
The new 2 Series Coupe remains a unique proposition in its segment and one of the very last models to be developed in old-school fashion. The rear-driven compact two-door model achieves the Holy Grail of weight axle distribution by means of specific measures. Compared to the preceding generation, the new 2 Series Coupe boasts significantly improved steering precision and cornering dynamics. Incremental steps for ensuring sharp and precise dynamics have been taken, such as wider axle tracks at the front and rear, carefully adjusted wheel camber values and an up to 12% boost in static torsional rigidity.
Like on the 4 Series Coupe, the new 2 Series Coupe generation is also fitted with lift-related dampers, that are designed to provide extra damping force when needed (driving over prominent bumps) or reduce excessive dive. Furthermore, the lift-related dampers also improve the comfort level by carefully absorbing minor road imperfections, and, at the same time, increase cornering agility.
The lift mechanism of the front and rear dampers employs additional elements besides the traditional architecture. At the front, the extra component drops down into the inner sleeve of the damper and cancels out body vibrations. The lift-related control at the rear axle employs an additional piston and a tapered inner tube to ensure optimum hydraulic damping even when carrying a heavy load.
Of course, on the standard-spec suspension, the level of lifting can be optimized specifically to achieve a good balance between sportiness and comfort. The more hardcore M Sport suspension provides stiffer characteristics and response of the lift-related dampers and springs as to achieve a firm, sporty ride.
There’s also the choice of the Adaptive M suspension, offered as an option on the M240i xDrive flagship model. Employing electronically controlled dampers, the damping force is automatically and individually metered on each wheel and as a function of the vehicle load. Moreso, the Adaptive M suspension also allows for more degree of freedom with respect to settings thanks to the Driving Experience Control modes: COMFORT, SPORT PLUS and ADAPTIVE. The latter adjusts to the driver’s own driving style and can also use navigation data to prepare the suspension ahead of a bend, for example.
All versions of the new BMW 2 Series Coupe come equipped with standard Electric Power Steering with Servotronic speed-sensitive assistance. Available as an option, the variable sport steering is offered in conjunction with the M Sport suspension or the Adaptive M suspension.
With respect to the high-performance M Sport brake system, a standard feature on the M240i xDrive Coupe, it is pretty much the same as the one offered on the M440i bigger sibling. The brakes feature four-piston fixed calipers at the front and single-piston floating calipers at the rear. The M Sport brakes are easily recognizable through the ///M logo painted on the calipers, which can be ordered in blue or red paint finish.