By on April 23, 2010

While its German rivals pour into the burgeoning four-door premium coupe segment, BMW has been busy exploring the premium five-door GT segment. With its complement of GT variants complete, the Bavarians are making up for lost time with this Gran Coupe Concept, debuting at today’s Beijing Auto Show. Basically a lower, wider, more coupe-profiled 7-series, the Gran Coupe is clearly aimed at models like the Porsche Panamera, Maserati Quattroporte and especially the forthcoming Audi A7. And though it’s technically just a styling exercise, the Gran Coupe (or something like it) could be headed for production.When asked by Autocar about the Gran Coupe’s chances of launching a revival of the 8 Series nameplate, BMW Chief Designer Adrian van Hooydonk said:

I don’t think of this car as an 8-series, but our marketing department may think differently. Either way, their work is just beginning, and I know that often it can take longer than our design work!

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18 Comments on “Beijing Auto Show: BMW Chases The Four-Door Coupe Niche...”


  • avatar
    jmo

    Stunning!!!

    The profile is especially nice.

    • 0 avatar
      bl0wfish

      I’m sorry, but the profile of a 4-door car just cannot look as beautiful and as natural as a 2-door coupe. Coupes must be 2-door. GT cars must be 2-door coupes. Period.

      This has to be the second big abomination in luxury car manufacturing after the current German SUV craze. What we saw in this SUV craze was how to interbreed a luxury saloon and an offroad vehicle resulting in a car that had the disadvantages of both, and the advantages of neither. The driving power behind that craze were snobbish customers who demanded a luxurious, fast vehicle with offroad abilities at all costs. And it was the German manufacturers who filled that niche just to increase their profits, not to produce great cars.

      Things are quite similar with the current 4-door coupe craze. Interbreeding a 4-door executive saloon and a GT coupe results in something that doesn’t look as good as a 2-door coupe (that’s one of the main reasons you buy one) and isn’t as practical as a saloon. If you really want a GT car you have to sacrifice on its practicality.

      The bottom line is for car manufacturers, especially German ones. Please stop abolishing the classic GT car concept and let the GT car be defined by pieces of art like the Bentley Continental, Aston Martin Vanquish, Jaguar XKR and the Ferrari 575.

  • avatar

    Massively better looking than the 6 series. I hope it reaches production without being beaten by BMW’s corporate ugly stick

  • avatar
    sitting@home

    Haven’t they been here before …

    http://www.automobilemag.com/features/news/0704_2007_bmw_cs_concept/

    It’s still a lot nicer than anything they currently sell.

  • avatar
    bmoredlj

    Looks like a return to focused, logical design that isn’t strange for the sake of strange, nor dull as toast. I maintain that the best-looking BMWs were the ones that aped the styling of the ’60 Corvair.

  • avatar
    superbadd75

    With the exception of the front, it looks a lot like an Infiniti to me.

  • avatar
    mikenem

    Exactly! I know the Infiniti Essence concept when I see it. ha

    http://www.conceptcarz.com/vehicle/z16675/Infiniti-Essence-Concept.aspx

  • avatar
    Russycle

    Yawn. Not bad looking, but how big is the four-door coupe market? Beemer’s taking a chance of joining the party as the fad peters out. Course, I didn’t the SUV craze would last as long as it did, so don’t mind me.

  • avatar

    I am so sick of the maligning of the term “coupe”. Calling a car a “coupe” does not make it so just because it has a slightly lowered roofline. Any car with enough room for 4 forward-hinged, full-sized doors is a sedan. The only modern 4 door coupes that have ever come to market are the Mazda RX-8 and Saturn Ion.

  • avatar
    bd2

    Best looking BMW in a long while; should have been the new 5.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    Surprisingly attractive for a modern BMW. Agree that this is what the bland, dowdy F10 5 should’ve looked like.

  • avatar
    blue adidas

    Can we please just all agree to mock and ridicule those who attempt to call a sedan a “coupe?” It’s stupid and idiotic. I love the looks of this car and would make sweet love to it, but it is NOT a coupe no matter what those morons at BMW tell us.

    Furthermore, they need to build this pronto. It’s a thousand times more attractive than anything in a BMW showroom right now. I’d pretty much written them off since everything that came after the amazing E39 5-Series sedan.

  • avatar
    PeriSoft

    Very nice – though still not Quattroporte nice. I still remember the moment I saw a photo of that car – it’s seared into my retinas. And if you’re going to have something seared into your retinas, there are far worse possibilities…

    Anyone know what used gen1 Quattroportes are going for these days?

  • avatar
    Accazdatch

    Without listening to the majority who think they can pull cues from other vehicles… (knowing most design cues mentioned.. CAME FROM BMW)

    Interesting CLS competitor just the same. Its nice to think BMW can actually produce a decent body on an existing frame (excusing the 5GT). Now I wait for the 4dr “shooting brake” — (knowing that any shooting brake is 3drs) competitor. — And the tornado of copiers from every automaker.

    I’m still trying to get over the current mistakes like the X6/5GT/3GT, last and current iterations of the 5 and 7 series.

    Heck..
    I guess its true.

    You are only as good as your last movie.. or in this case last car.

  • avatar
    blowfish

    Anyone know what used gen1 Quattroportes are going for these days?

    I am sure u can afford the car, if u cant fix them yourself i am not so sure if yours will run.

    The Gen 1 , u mean from 60’s? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maserati_Quattroporte 63-69

    In the late 70s there was an Indy or Ghibli sitting in a Toronto car lot, I always stop by after hours to admire her.

    I am happy to drive these Merc Oel burners, simple & cheap to run.

  • avatar
    hughie522

    I think it looks too similar to the current-gen 5 and 7 series, and it really does nothing for me visually.

    BMW have gone from Bangle era eye-searing to Lexus-dull in just one generation, an incredible feat.

    Compare the Passat and old gen E-Class to their CC and CLS derivatives to see what I mean.

    No doubt the BMWistas will buy it in droves, as they always do.


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