BMW has decided that its model numbering system needs an overhaul. The 2 Series is what we used to call a 1 Series Coupe; the name change is because this gives a more exclusive feel to the 2 Series.
BMW has a great record of delivering cars with excellent fuel consumption and it has now managed to eke a little bit more out of the new model. The familiar 2-litre diesel unit is now matched with a new optional 8-speed automatic gearbox which maximises fuel economy at all speeds but is particularly effective at higher speeds.
The characteristics that we loved in the 1 Series Coupe are all still present: 50:50 weight distribution, top notch material quality, rear-wheel drive, strong performance and great fuel economy – which, incidentally, can also be achieved in the real world.
If you don’t fancy the automatic gearbox you can save a healthy chunk of cash and get the six-speed manual, something that is worth seriously considering as fuel consumption is only slightly worse. In either case you get engine start/stop and gear change indicators to maximise efficiency.
The 218d is more expensive than the 118d was, but part of that will be due to the BMW now meeting Euro 6 regs which means that PM and NOx are on a par with petrol engines. This means that the diesel engine can now achieve very low CO2 emissions without increasing local air quality emissions, making it a genuinely low emissions package.