The high-performance, high-luxury 2018 BMW M6 Gran Coupe carries on for another year. In the near future, a brand-new 8 Series range will take over from the 6 as the company’s super-high-end indulgence model. While we’re taking this particular trip around the sun, however, the M6 Gran Coupe brings its usual distinct charms to the automotive world.
Beneath this currently fashionable "4-door coupe" body style are the mechanicals of the previous-generation M5 midsize sport sedan (a new generation of 5 Series debuts for 2018), including the suspension setup and a fabulous turbocharged V8 that makes a mighty 560 horsepower. So there’s plenty of substance to accompany the sleek looks and the lofty level of standard equipment. The M6 Gran Coupe remains a seriously desirable car.
The 2018 M6 convertible is reviewed separately.
What’s New for 2018?
What We Like
Astounding acceleration; impressive handling; sumptuously snug interior; comprehensive technology features; optional manual transmission
What We Don’t
Expensive, even for a high-performance luxury sedan; restricted occupant space
A twin-turbocharged 4.4-liter V8 engine develops 560 hp and 502 lb-ft of torque, rising to 600 hp and 516 lb-ft with the optional Competition package.
The transmission is a 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual with paddle shifters (essentially an automatic transmission). In a nod to BMW’s performance pedigree, a 6-speed manual transmission is also available at no extra cost. Power goes solely to the rear wheels.
Despite an automatic start/stop feature that helps save a little fuel, economy is not a strong suit. With the automatic transmission, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates 14 miles per gallon in the city, 20 mpg on the highway and 16 mpg in combined driving. The manual transmission fares slightly better, at 15 mpg city/22 mpg hwy/17 mpg combined.
Standard Features & Options
The 2018 BMW M6 Gran Coupe ($120,895) is a 4-door sedan that comes as a single model.
Standard features include 20-inch wheels, an electronically adjustable sport-tuned suspension, a limited-slip rear differential, drive mode selection, adaptive LED headlights with automatic high beams, LED fog lights/taillights, adaptive cruise control, a carbon-fiber roof, keyless entry/ignition, leather upholstery, power-adjustable 14-way M-specific front sport seats with heating and memory settings, a power-adjustable steering column, self-dimming mirrors, quad-zone automatic climate control, soft-close doors, parking sensors front and rear, rain-sensing wipers, carbon-fiber cabin trim, Bluetooth, wireless device charging, an iDrive infotainment system with a 10.2-in widescreen display, a touchpad control knob, a rearview camera, navigation, Wi-Fi and a 16-speaker/600-watt Harman Kardon Surround Sound system with iPod/USB connectivity, satellite radio and HD Radio.
Options-wise, the Competition package adds 40 hp, a lowered suspension with even sportier settings, re-calibrated steering, stability control and differential settings, lighter-weight 20-in wheels and a sport exhaust system with "black chrome" tips.
The Executive package brings a power rear sunshade with manual rear side sunshades, a head-up display, a heated steering wheel, active ventilated front seats with real-time cornering support, heated rear seats and a Bang & Olufsen 16-speaker audio system.
The Driving Assistance package brings forward-collision mitigation, lane-keeping assistance, blind spot monitoring and a head-up display.
The M Driver’s package brings a higher top speed (190 mph) and a day’s instruction at a BMW Performance Center.
Other options include carbon ceramic brakes, a side-/top-view camera system, night vision with pedestrian detection, an Alcantara (simulated suede) headliner and Apple CarPlay.
Trunk capacity is 16.2 cu ft., and the rear seats split and fold for some versatility.
The M6 Gran Coupe comes with driver-adjustable stability control, numerous electronic brake optimization features with automatic brake-disc drying, active front seat head restraints, eight airbags (front, front side, front knee and full-length side curtain), plus the BMW Assist telematics system providing emergency assistance such as crash notification and roadside assistance.
The 6 Series Gran Coupe body style has not been crash-tested in the United States.
Behind the Wheel
The M6 Gran Coupe excels in sheer driving pleasure, feeling sharp, responsive and athletic. In the driver’s seat, it really feels like a 2-door. And being endowed with 560 hp (or more) is always a good thing. Especially when it’s so accessible and comes on with such fearsome intensity.
From acceleration (standstill to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds with the automatic transmission), outright speed, balance and poise to gadgetry, this car gets virtually everything supremely right. It even rides nicely with those adaptive dampers on the appropriate setting.
Because of the dramatic profile, rear passenger space is more limited than in a conventional sedan size, but two average-size adults can fit in the back seats (not three, though).
Other Cars to Consider
2018 Mercedes-AMG CLS 63 S — The twin-turbocharged V8 here is even more powerful, with 577 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. Also about to be replaced.
2018 Audi RS 7 — With arguably the most striking looks of the bunch, the RS 7 also has all-wheel drive as standard and a beautifully refined twin-turbo V8. There’s a 605-hp Performance variant as well.
Used BMW M3 Sedan — The previous-generation V8-powered M3 sedan is an ideal 4-door performance car, obtainable for a fraction of the M6 Gran Coupe’s new-car price.
Remember that the 8 Series is imminent. Now could be a good time to negotiate a honey of deal on an M6 Gran Coupe. You’ll be able to make up your own mind on whether you want the Competition bundle or not, but the Executive and Driving Assistance packages should definitely be considered.