The all-new BMW 2 Series Coupé (G42)

Och

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I've had a 2015 m235i (rwd) for three years, which I then replaced with a 2018 M2 which is still in the family - I gave it to my daughter back in 2019. I also had a 2017 m240i (rwd) that I was stuck with for about 6 months - I cosigned a lease for a friend, and with 6 month left on his term he informed that he could no longer make payments, so I had to take over the car. That is to say I'm well familiar with the 2 series, and the last generation 2er has been my favorite BMW model of all times.

This morning I took my wifes car to BMW for service, and they had a new 230i loaner, so naturally I asked to take it. Lucky for me it is the rwd version, which I much prefer over the xdrive versions which rob the entire driving feel.

Only drove it for a little bit, but looks like I will have it over the weekend, so I'll play with it some more. Right away I can tell that in Comfort mode the 4 cylinder is smooth and almost acceptable, especially compared to the 4 cylinder 3er/5ers which are just absolutely dreadful. In sport mode with the fake sound it actually sound pretty convincing, I would also say it almost sounds faster than the car is.

Coming from my other cars, the car feels somewhat slow with the 4 cylinder, but and not sluggish, and the response and acceleration are very good and very consistent. With RWD it has enough torque to break the traction from the dig. I believe it also has some sort of mild hybrid, as it shows "charging battery" while coasting in the energy flow screen, and has a graphic of a battery on the side of the car connected to the drivetrain. I need to research into this.

The one thing that pleasantly surprised me is the digital instrument cluster. I generally don't like digital clusters, but this one is stylized to replicate mechanical gauges, and looks pretty convincing - I actually had to touch the gauges to make sure they are screens and not mechanical. In my wifes X6M the digital cluster has the most ridiculous graphics that were designed by clowns, and newer refreshed models with the stick on screens are even worse. It is refreshing to see the 2er sticking true to the simple formula.

The rest of the interior seems improved with better seats, but being a base model it doesn't have the same nice materials as my M2. But all in all I love the simplicity of the 2er interiors, and this one stayed true to the formula and immediately felt familiar - everything is right there in the right places.

Exterior styling wise it is a huge step backwards from the previous model. Maybe it will grow on me, but so far in the photos and in person it disappoints me.

But overall, I could definitely live with it, and I'll definitely consider the next M2. Hopefully BMW come to their senses and style it less ridiculous than what we've been seeing in the spy photos.

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Och

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P.S. - This one has an electronic parking brake, while all my past 2ers had a manual parking brake. Not sure if this is across the entire 2 series model range, or if they will have mechanical parking brake in the next M2.
 

Ian Schmidt

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That's a really good digital instrument cluster! The center stack reminds me a lot of the 5LS, which is a good thing. Exterior is meh, but these days I give extra points to BMWs without the double-height beaver teeth.
 

Och

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The exterior is starting to grow on me a little, I'm sure I'll warm up the the M2 when it comes out. Looks best at this angle, direct front and rear views are still meh.

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Not sure if the base model has cheaper screens, but the digital cluster is hard to see in the sun. My wifes car doesn't have this problem.

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This is the energy flow thing I was talking about, it switches to it when braking.

 

Och

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That's a really good digital instrument cluster! The center stack reminds me a lot of the 5LS, which is a good thing. Exterior is meh, but these days I give extra points to BMWs without the double-height beaver teeth.

Here is a better view of the cluster. Still no HUD, at least in the base 2er, maybe it's available for higher end versions. In the previous gen, even the M2 did not have a HUD.

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The center stack and the instrument cluster binnacle are still good, I absolutely hate the latest BMW models with tacked on long screen that combines infotainment and gauges, it looks like total crap. And yeah, overall its not styled as offensively as the rest of new bimmers with beaver teeth.
 

ssun30

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Your previous BMWs should also have the Efficient Dynamics micro hybrid system. It uses a belt driven starter-generator to recover energy with engine braking. It's even available on manual transmission cars.

From 2021 onwards BMW upgraded it into a 48V systems although it is still not a full mild-hybrid system since it doesn't have full-electric creep and engine-off coasting. But it adds ability to do torque fill (50Nm only) and load balancing. However, just these two utilities are enough to give the latest BMWs even more impressive acceleration and fuel efficiency on top of the already perfect engines. The price is about 40kg of extra weight, much lighter than the 100kg Mercedes mild-hybrid system.
 

Och

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Your previous BMWs should also have the Efficient Dynamics micro hybrid system. It uses a belt driven starter-generator to recover energy with engine braking. It's even available on manual transmission cars.

I wasn't aware of that. Do I understand correctly that the starter doubled as a generator, and charged the 12v battery on engine braking? Seems pretty moot.


From 2021 onwards BMW upgraded it into a 48V systems although it is still not a full mild-hybrid system since it doesn't have full-electric creep and engine-off coasting. But it adds ability to do torque fill (50Nm only) and load balancing. However, just these two utilities are enough to give the latest BMWs even more impressive acceleration and fuel efficiency on top of the already perfect engines. The price is about 40kg of extra weight, much lighter than the 100kg Mercedes mild-hybrid system.

So it has a 48v battery and a 48v motor to assist the ICE?
 

ssun30

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Micro hybrids are useful in stop-and-go traffic with long traffic lights. BMWs with Efficient Dynamics can keep the accessories running about 3x as long as regular cars with start stop. The average alternator is very inefficient so reducing alternator load can improve fuel efficiency and power. It's especially useful if your commute has a lot of elevation changes.

The new ones just upsize it from 12V to 48V.
 

mikeavelli

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Nice base pricing. Tho it’s crazy a M2 costs what a M3 used to cost… I just can’t get past the styling.. no interest.. loved the previous M2 a ton
 

Och

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Nice base pricing. Tho it’s crazy a M2 costs what a M3 used to cost… I just can’t get past the styling.. no interest.. loved the previous M2 a ton

When I was getting my M2, I initially leased it, and the lease in 2018 was the same as a similarly equipped M3 that cost tens of thousands more. I loved the car so much, I decided to buy it out. Now my daughter has it, she absolutely loves it well. It may have less power and bells and whistles than the M3, but its not bloated and feels a lot more pure.

I'm just hoping the next M2 stays RWD.
 

Och

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So it looks like you can only get the normal gauges in the base 2 series. In the m240 and in the M2 you get the stupid maxipad tacked onto the dash, with bloated menus absolutely demoralizing graphics instead of proper gauges.

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Levi

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I am afraid I am worse than a "boomer". I just can't stand that. I already have the smallest phone available, am struggling to find a decent 10"-12 inch chromebook laptop, I just don't see myself liking any coming car interior. CarPlay/Android Auto where such a good upgrade over DIN2 infotainment, now it lost its sense. Graphics will always look dated at some point (unless CLI -- which at is not a graphical interface).

Maybe Porsche Exclusive Manufacture can customize their interior for "screen delete"?

They upgraded the system for old models like 996 or 993:

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That is the most "environment friendly" thing to do, rather than pumping out overpriced electronic garbage.