BMW has revealed the new luxury 6-Series Coupé. It is more muscular and aggressive looking than the 5-Series, but far more conventional than the 7-Series. It is due in South Africa next year.BMW has revealed the new 6-Series. It is more muscular and aggressive looking than the 5-Series, but far more conventional than the 7-Series. It is due in South Africa next year.

The luxury coupé makes its début at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. Market launch in Germany is planned for the end of 2003 and the price, though not yet final, will be around the level of the 7-Series. The South African launch of the new Six is planned for the middle of next year.

It shows a design with characteristic, flowing tension lines and unusual stretched, but classical proportions.

The range starts with the 645 Ci powered by the 4,4-litre V8 power unit from the BMW 745i. It features valvetronic valve control and develops maximum outputs of 245 kW and 450 N.m at 3600 r/min. According to BMW, the 645Ci’s top speed is limited electronically to 250 km/h and the car sprints from 0-100 km/h in 5,6 seconds.

A mid-range 635Ci and smaller 630Ci are also due at a later stage.

BMW will offer three transmissions: a standard six-speed manual, an optional six-speed automatic with steptronic and a sequential six-speed manual, featuring both a gearshift lever and shift paddles on the steering wheel.

The passenger space is set far back and has a very low roof line and outlined style elements at the front side panels loosens up the car’s silhouette.

As in the new 5- and 7-Series, all functions required for driving the car are located directly on or around the steering wheel. There is also easy access to the controller for the iDrive system. Automatic air conditioning is standard.

At a later date, a head-up display, presenting information directly in the driver’s line of vision on the windscreen, will be offered as an option.

Further options are Active Cruise Control (ACC) and a glass panorama vent roof with an electrically moving roofliner, which gives the interior a more spacious and brighter feel, as it is much larger than a conventional sliding roof.

The 6-Series measures 4 820 mm in length, 1 855 mm in width, and 1 373 mm in height, and is claimed to offer ample space. The large luggage compartment is sufficient for two golf bags plus a suitcase.

The new vehicle is lighter, thanks to the use of a combination of aluminum, steel and synthetic materials in the body construction. The front section of the car is significantly lighter than steel due to weight-reduced aluminium-technology (WRAT), the rear lid is made of plastic, the front lid and doors of aluminium and the front side panels of thermoplastic. The overall weight of the car is approximately 1 600 kg, with axle load distribution close to the ideal of 50:50. This is aimed at improving performance and fuel economy.

Suspension, by MacPherson strut (front) and multilink (rear) is similar to that used in the 5-Series.

The new 6-Series Coupé comes standard with Dynamic Drive Control (DDC), which adds to stability and provides a faster gearshift.

The all-aluminium chassis and suspension is upgraded with Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Dynamic Traction Control (DTC). As an option, the 6-Series Coupé is also available with BMW's Dynamic Drive suspension, which helps compensate body sway in a bend, as well as BMW's Active Steering, which providies a more direct steering ratio at low speeds, together with more indirect steering at high speeds.

Runflat tyres are standard, and adaptive headlights, swivelling to the side for better illumination of the road ahead, are available as an option.

The 6-Series range will later be supplemented by a 2+2 convertible with a traditional cloth roof and glass rear window. It will debut at the Detroit Motor Show in January.