Sometimes, there comes along a used car that’s such a steal in terms of performance and luxury that you wonder why it was so overlooked when it was new. The BMW 6 Series Gran Coupé is one such car. It was expensive back in 2012, but you can now put a pre-owned one on your driveway for the price of a new Hyundai i10, and it will certainly blow your neighbours’ minds.
It follows the tradition established by the Mercedes-Benz CLS and Audi A7 Sportback in being a coupé-cum-saloon; in effect, it’s a slightly stretched, four-door version of the 6 Series Coupé. And if it initially doesn’t seem to have much point, it does at least look absolutely gorgeous.
The good news is that there’s easily enough performance to back up those stunning looks. Beginning the range are two turbocharged six-cylinder models: a diesel badged the 640d and a petrol with the 640i name tag. Although the petrol is more powerful, both have plenty of punch and can do 0-62mph in 5.4sec before reaching an electronically limited top speed of 155mph.
Next up, there’s the 650i, with a twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre petrol V8. This 444bhp cruiser cuts the 0-62mph time to just 4.6sec. And if that isn’t enough, the M6 has a more heavily worked version of the same engine with 552bhp – or 591bhp if you opt for the Competition upgrade. You don’t need us to tell you that its performance is stunning.
The 6 Series Gran Coupé isn’t just good in a straight line, though. There is an engaging fluidity to its handling that endows it with plenty of driver appeal. The steering is direct and well weighted and the chassis is nicely balanced. The ride is firm but comfortable and poor surfaces don’t spoil the exceptional refinement.
The interior is a match for this, being lavishly leathered, well designed and clearly carefully assembled using some of the finest materials. The driving position is low and electrically adjustable and there’s plenty of room up front. Rear passengers have a harder time of it, however, with slightly constricted leg room, while the small rear door apertures mean getting in and out can be hard work.
There are but two trim levels: SE and M Sport. Entry-level cars get all of the expected luxuries, including 18in alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, cruise control and, of course, leather upholstery as standard. M Sport simply adds a sportier bodykit that enhances the car’s sleek lines.
You can buy a 6 Series Gran Coupé for a mere £12,000, but it will have a high mileage; an average-miler will set you back around £15,000. Between £16,000 and £20,000 will find plenty of good 2015 and 2016 cars, while £20,000-£30,000 will get you into the driver’s seat of a 2017 or 2018 car. Pay around £25,000 and upwards for the 2019 endlings.
Interior The 6 Series has proved reliable but welds on the air-con condenser can fail, causing the gas to leak, so check it blows cold air. Electrical faults are common and can result in big bills, so avoid any car with a warning light or message showing.
Options These are plentiful and many are worth having, including the Competition Package, so be sure, when comparing cars, that you're clear what extras it is fitted with. Standard packs should include a B&O sound system, the Executive Package and the Driver's Assistance Package. The carbon ceramic brakes are expensive to replace but if you're not using it on the track, they could outlive the car.
Need to know
The 640d SE with 18in wheels scored 49.6mpg on the old NEDC test and the 640i only 36.2mpg. Don’t expect much more than 20mpg out of any V8 model. Road tax will be suitably pricey, too.
Servicing is costly, especially at main dealers. BMW offers packs that allow you to budget for future servicing and pay by direct debit. Older cars can be looked after by independents, likely for less cash.
640d SE: Despite the smoothness of the six-cylinder petrol engine in the 640i, we’d still choose the diesel for its blend of performance and fuel economy. SE trim gives you the same kit as M Sport but minus the sportier styling, so we would stick with that.
M6: Goes like stink and looks the business. If you have enough wherewithal for the higher running costs, this autobahn missile is a humdinger, producing 591bhp if the Competition pack is fitted.
Ones we found
2013 640d SE, 76,000 miles, £12,995
2015 640i SE, 33,000 miles, £19,950
2017 M6, 35,000 miles, £37,950
2018 650i M Sport, 29,000 miles, £28,950