BMW decided to replace the 6 Series Coupe and Gran Coupe with the 8 Series, which didn’t end up selling as well as BMW had hoped. So after this generation of 8 Series is dead, the nameplate will go back into hibernation, just as it did after the E31-generation 8er did in the ’90s. In a few years, though, BMW might have the opportunity to bring the 6 Series back, as an electric grand touring car, built on the Neue Klasse platform. And it absolutely should.
When BMW finally releases the Neue Klasse series of cars, it’s going to have a scalable, flexible platform on which to build all sorts of cars. Small cars, big cars, sports cars, and SUVs. All can and will be built on Neue Klasse. So there’s certainly room for cars like the 6 Series. But which 6 Series would make sense to bring back?
The one that makes the most sense is the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe. That car is one of the best looking BMWs of all time and still drops my jaw every time I see one on the road. It’s just so perfectly proportioned and it looks both muscular and elegant. It’s a gorgeous design and one that BMW should try and bring back, at least in spirit. An added benefit is that customers seem to be leaning more toward four-door “coupes” than traditional sedans. The idea is that you get the sleeker looks of a coupe with the added practicality of a sedan. Four-door coupes are sort of killing off both the traditional two-door coupe and four-door sedan, so if BMW were to revive the 6er, it’d likely be as a gran coupe.
However, I think there’s also space for a traditional two-door coupe and, if I were making the decisions in Munich, there’d be one. Can you just imagine, for a moment, an electric BMW 6 Series coupe? That sounds fantastic, so long as BMW were to style it properly. Give it a futuristic version of the last-gen 6 Series’ design and you’ve got a smash hit on your hands.
The main thing BMW would have to get right is the price, though. It needs to be a 6 Series, essentially a 5 Series coupe/gran coupe. No one is going to buy a six-figure BMW coupe when they can get a Porsche 911. Not only have sales figures proved me right but we’ve spoken to dealers who flat-out admit no one wants to buy the 8 Series because they can get a 911 for the same money. So BMW needs to price an electric 6 Series at just a bit more than the 5 Series. Give a $60,000-$70,000 price range and people will buy it. Crest $90,000 and people will not. It didn’t work out well for the original 8 Series and it didn’t for the current one. If you want to sell premium sporty coupes, stay out of the 911’s way.
Will BMW make an electric 6 Series, style it properly, and price it well? Probably not. I think BMW is a bit gun-shy with smaller-volume sports cars, due to its recent string of bad luck. The 8 Series and Z4 did pretty poorly and the 2 Series only sells well because it’s cheap by BMW standards. However, I also think the market for electric vehicles is wide open. This is an incredibly exciting time for both automakers and customers because there really are no rules. With EVs still being so novel, automakers can take risks and come out with strange, exciting, and interesting cars, like the Hyundai Ioniq 5, KIA EV6, Polestar 2, and Audi e-tron GT. This is a great time for experimentation. And BMW should absolutely try its hand at another 6 Series while it still can.