We get to have a bigger, larger BMW 6-series for a few weeks. Something we never thought we’d be driving, how different can it be?
The BMW 640GT, is well known for its utilitarianism and efficiency in Europe, but regarded as something of an anomaly in these parts – something Abu Dhabi Motors is keen to address, which is why we’ve been given the key to one for a long term test. Could a few weeks allow us enough time and experience to fall for its charms the way customers have in other countries? Time will tell.
At first glance, the 6 Series GT is a slight departure from the design aesthetic we’ve become used to with BMW’s road cars. Unlike the Grand Coupe it is named after, it looks big, tall, and a little chunky. It looks heavy. It looks like it’s going to be a bit of a lumbering beast on the road.
As it happens, the only lumbering thing is me. The GT moves about with impressive lightness thanks to the 3.0-litre engine the “40” nomenclature implies of late. Power output peaks at 320hp, while torque stays constant at 450Nm, and it makes for astonishing reactions off the line, making the 640 a rather fun car to play around with.
Get to a cobblestone section of road, switch the traction control off, start playing with the throttle and you are the drifting master. The balance is completely neutral and playfulness is ramped up to the max. BMW, it turns out, has managed to make a predictable rhinoceros and I’m loving it.
On the engine side, the six-cylinder unit is equipped with a twin scroll turbo that, unfortunately, shows a tiny bit of lag. Don’t get me wrong, it is very quick off the line, but only after you’ve passed 1,700rpm. In other words, pretty much like all the other contemporary BMWs.
Over the course of my first week with the car, it puts 1,000km under its belt. With the adjustments to the driving style, the need to play for a bit and the general novelty of experiencing a new motor, its fuel consumption sits at 11.9L/100km – quite beyond the claimed figure of 7.4. That said, a full tank seems to be good for 570km, so quite acceptable for the daily commute and pitting once every 10 days or so.
The summer is pretty much full blast here now, and the BMW’s air conditioning is generally good, although lacking at times – something that could be contributing to its overall thirst. This particular car also comes with the latest BMW smart-key, which, in theory, should allow a pre-conditioning of the car. I’ll make sure to put that to the test before the next report.