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Baby sports car and open-top counterpart receive mid-life styling tweaks and optional all-wheel-drive in higher-end models. In the typical fashion of facelifted BMWs, changes in the new 2-series Coupe and Convertible are microscopic and would probably only be noticed by eagle-eyed enthusiasts.
The front end, for one, has changed the most with bigger kidney grilles, restyled air vents and bi-LED lights made standard. While the M Sport trim sees more aggressive-looking bumper design, the lesser Luxury and Sport Lines get more subtle air intakes.
Like in the recent facelift of the 4-series Coupe and Convertible, both 2-series models get more premium finish inside as well as a newly-designed instrument panel and central touchscreen.
As the 2-series has no direct rival from Audi, Lexus or Mercedes-Benz – three other premium brands that make compact hatchbacks with front-wheel-drive – BMW is still keen in touting the 2-series as a genuine sports car for driving fans.
However, the decision to offer xDrive all-wheel-drive in some potent models could be seen as an effort in broadening the appeal of the 2-series to another set of buyers wanting more driving security on slippery roads as well as more predictable manners under hard acceleration.
The M240i, for one, has 340hp 3.0-litre turbocharged inline-six with eight-speed automatic transmission with optional xDrive system. Likewise, the other petrol and diesel engine variances remain unchanged all the way down to the 218i, featuring 136hp 1.5-litre three-pot turbo motor.
For the past few years, BMW has tried to lower the price point of the 2-series Coupe as much as possible by merely offering the 218i M Sport in Thai showrooms at 2.599 million baht apiece. However, it is claimed that that the 4-series Coupe is still the favoured choice among Thais. As the pre-facelift 420d Coupe M Sport went for 3.999 million baht, customers thought it might be just better to go for a bigger car with a four-cylinder engine. After all, luxury imports like these aren’t aimed at budget-minded punters.
The revised 2-series goes on sale in world markets from July, although the Thai BMW office would concentrate more on the facelifted 4-series later this year due to the aforementioned reasons.