BMW has taken the wraps off its new 2 Series Gran Coupé, positioning the fresh-faced four-door model as a rival to Mercedes-Benz’s CLA.

Set to be produced at the German firm’s plant in Leipzig, the new F44-generation BMW 2 Series Gran Coupé will make its public debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show in November 2019.

The newcomer will launch in initial markets in March 2020, with 218i, 220d and M235i xDrive variants on offer (the make-up of the range for South Africa, however, has yet to be confirmed).

Unlike the rear-driven 2 Series Coupé, the four-door version runs on BMW’s front-wheel-drive architecture (shared with the new 1 Series), with the M235i benefitting from an all-wheel-drive arrangement.

The 2 Series Gran Coupé measures 4 526 mm long, 1 800 mm wide and 1 420 mm tall, sporting a wheelbase of 2 670 mm. The load compartment can swallow 430 litres, according to BMW. Like larger Gran Coupé models in the Munich-based firm’s range, the four-door 2 Series features frameless door glass.

Standard alloy wheel sizes vary from 16 inches on the entry-level model to 18 inches for the M Sport and M235i variants, although a set of 19-inch items will be offered as an option on some derivatives, as will a panoramic roof.

Inside, the new BMW Operating System 7.0 will be offered as an option, allowing buyers to specify two large screens each measuring 10,25 inches. Another option will be a full-colour (9,2-inch) head-up display, while the firm’s familiar iDrive controller will ship standard.

So, what’s happening under the bonnet? Well, the entry-level engine is the 1,5-litre three-cylinder unit in the 218i, which offers 103 kW/220 N.m (via either a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch transmission). Then there’s the 2,0-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel handing the 220d’s front axle some 140 kW/400 N.m through an eight-speed automatic, while the turbocharged 2,0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit generates 225 kW/450 N.m in the M235i xDrive.

The flagship model – also fitted with an automatic gearbox featuring eight forward ratios – will hit 100 km/h from standstill in a claimed 4,9 seconds (or one-tenth quicker with the M Performance package specified) before topping out at 250 km/h.