No plans for a smaller M6 Gran Coupe sibling on the BMW M GmbH horizon.
Those interested in a smaller version of the fast and beautiful BMW M6 Gran Coupe, or even a cheaper alternative to the hot, stylish and practical Audi RS7 Sportback will not find an M4 Gran Coupe in BMW’s lineup any time soon.
BMW's M GmbH performance arm sales boss Jörg Bartels confirmed the decision not to build a hot M version of the recently launched 4 Series five-door coupe hatch at this week’s Australian launch of the new M3 and M4 performance models: “That is a negative. It was definitely considered, but there is no plan to build an M4 Gran Coupe.”
“Part of the reason is expected production volume, but also the 4 Series Gran Coupe is built in a different factory to both the 3 Series (sedan) and 4 Series (coupe), so there is a lot of challenges there.”
The F30 3 Series sedan and new F80 M3 sedan are built in BMW’s Regensburg facility, and the F32 4 Series coupe and F82 M4 are built in the Munich plant, whereas the F36 4 Series Gran Coupe is sourced from the Dingolfing factory.
This is despite the 4 Series Gran Coupe sharing its wheelbase and much of its platform with the sedan and coupe that form the basis of the new M3 and M4, but the sums don’t add up for gearing up a third German plant to assemble the M models’ array of bespoke drivetrain and structural elements.
The fellow 3 and 4 Series platform-sharing 3 Series Gran Turismo has also been excluded from full-house M plans, but this comes as no surprise for the tall-boy hatch given the larger 5 Series Gran Turismo has never spawned an M variant in its five years on sale.
The drop-top F83 M4 convertible is set to arrive locally in 2015 however, but it looks like the folding-hardtop model will cap the mid-size M GmbH performance offerings at three for the foreseeable future.
BMW-rival Audi has made similar bodystyle-count decisions with its M3 and M4-competing RS4 and RS5 models, with the A5 coupe and convertible getting the RS performance treatment to create RS5 models, along with the A4 Avant to create the RS4, but the A5 Sportback and A4 sedan have been excluded from the current-generation RS portfolio.