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by Karl Peskett

BMW has launched its redesigned 6 Series Coupe, on the back of the 6 Series Convertible which was released last month.

As a complete ground-up replacement for its precedessor, the new 6 Series Coupe is in fact 75mm longer, 39mm wider and 5mm lower than the previous model.

It’s still a 2+2 seater coupe, but now features new engines and enhanced environmental credentials. Headlining BMW’s Efficient Dynamics is the 640i which uses a turbocharged in-line six-cylinder petrol engine making 235 kW and 450 Nm at 1,300 – 4,500 rpm.

The 640i uses an eight-speed automatic, yet has a stop-start function, which combined with a so-called ECO PRO mode allows it to achieve a fuel consumption of just 7.7-litres/100km. It will still go from 0-100km/h in 5.4 seconds and on to a limited top speed of 250km/h.

The next step up in the range is the 650i which uses a twin-turbocharged V8 to produce 300kW and 600 Nm at 1,750 – 4,500 rpm. This gives the V8-powered 6 Series a 0-100km/h time of just 4.9 seconds and again, on to a limited top speed of 250km/h. Amazingly, the combined fuel consumption is 10.4L/100km.

The 6 Series is said to be the first in its segment to combine both Electric Power Steering and optional Integral Active Steering, which allows the rear wheels to steer as well as the fronts. BMW says that at speeds of up to 60 km/h, the rear wheels are turned in the opposite direction to the steering angle of the front wheels which reduces steering effort, as well as the turning circle. For such a large car, this is definitely a help.

The 6 Series Coupe is also the first in its segment to be fitted with with Adaptive LED Headlights for low and high beam (as an option) and inside, the car can come with a heated steering wheel and a panoramic sunroof. There’s a head up display which now has full colour graphics, a high-res infotainment screen, BMW Night Vision, and park assist. Bang & Olufsen also supply the sound, meaning the car will be as much of a pleasure to be in, as to drive.

Comfort and Sports seats are available, as well as active bolstering, heated and cooling functions, and Nappa leather for the seat faces.

Speaking with CarAdvice today, BMW spokesperson Piers Scott said that the 6 Series Coupe will launch in the first quarter of 2012.