2012 BMW 650i Coupe Review
BMW's 6 Series has always required two things: style and pace. Good news: It finally has enough of the former to keep up with the latter. No, the 2012 BMW 650i isn't the best-looking 6 Series ever built (that credit would go to the shark-nosed, Bracq-penned 1976 original), but it's far and away a triumph over the frumpy second-gen car it replaces. From every angle, the new 6 Series Coupe and Convertible is a sleek, svelte road rocket -- a true gentleman's express for eating up miles of wide-open road one huge mouthful at a time.
Gone are the awkward Bangleisms of the bland-o-riffic second-generation car. The trunk no longer juts awkwardly from the rear of the car, and the nose has a new sense of purpose, with its snorting, upright twin grilles and wide-mouthed lower intake. On the coupe, that trademark Hoffmeister kink is still intact, emboldened by a wider, shiny metal trim strip, and the package as a whole is longer by nearly 3 inches, lower by a bit under half an inch, and wider by an inch and a half. It looks even better in the sheetmetal than it does in photos. The convertible has a slightly frumpy look with the top up, typical of so many soft-roofed convertibles, but does look rather striking when the top is stowed.
The interior of the all-new 6 Series is another marked improvement over the previous-generation car. Upscale touches are everywhere, from the semi-digital gauges to the larger center display and aluminum accents, to the finely stitched leather surfaces. The seats are comfortable and supportive, and there's plenty of room for driver and passenger up front. While BMW claims there's actually improved headroom front and rear, the small plus-two packaging and sloping roofline means that for adults, the rear seat is strictly for very occasional use, and even then, rear passengers taller than 5'10" will find themselves slouching to avoid head contact with the roof. Rear passengers in the convertible will be happier, with the more upright roof providing an additional inch or so of noggin space, and an infinite amount with the roof lowered.