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2013 BMW 640i Gran Coupe (pictures)

BMW's new four-door sports coupe, of the grande variety, combines sharp looks, excellent performance, and innovative cabin tech.

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Wayne Cunningham
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1 of 38 Josh Miller/CNET
BMW designed the 6-series Gran Coupe to expand the buyer base for the 6-series, which only had been sold as a two-door coupe previously. The Gran Coupe retains the styling of the 6-series coupe yet adds easy accessibility and legroom to the rear seats.
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BMW did an excellent job styling the 6-series for its most recent update. The hood drops down to the grille, making the front of the car look low to the ground.
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Under the hood of the 640i Gran Coupe is BMW's 3-liter inline six-cylinder engine, making 320 horsepower with the help of direct injection and a turbocharger.
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The Gran Coupe looks long and low. The roofline drops off before the trunk lip, an interesting choice given how competitors are designing near hatchback sedans.
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These 20-inch wheels are an upgrade over the standard 19s.
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The trunk is surprisingly large, with a lot of length.
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This model came equipped with optional multicontour front seats that include a massage function.
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Although the 640i Gran Coupe is based on a two-door model, the rear seats offer a good amount of legroom.
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BMW puts the Gran Coupe badge on a panel just inside the rear window.
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Navigation comes standard in the 640i Gran Coupe, but many other features, such as apps connectivity, are optional.
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BMW uses a new electric power steering system, which helps the car achieve better fuel economy.
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Unlike other automakers, BMW does not place screens for entertainment or the phone system on the instrument cluster.
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The eight-speed automatic transmission is standard in the 640i Gran Coupe. To the right of the shifter are buttons that put the car into Sport or Comfort modes.
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Paddle shifters on the steering wheel allow quick sequential manual shifting.
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Eco Pro is one of five driving modes offered by the 640i Gran Coupe. This mode optimizes fuel economy.
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The head-up display shows vehicle speed and route guidance on the windshield.
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Icons on the mirror casings show when it is not safe to change lanes.
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The rear-view camera peeps out from behind the badge.
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BMW's rear-view camera shows distance and trajectory lines.
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A split-view front camera helps when nosing out of a blind corner or driveway.
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The iDrive controller manipulates all onscreen content.
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The main menu in the iDrive interface includes the ConnectDrive as a recent addition, which leads to app connectivity features.
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ConnectedDrive includes Facebook and Twitter updates.
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One really cool connected feature is the Wiki Tourguide, which finds nearby locations with Wikipedia pages.
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The Twitter feed not only shows updates, but the poster's photo.
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The navigation system shows 3D rendered buildings in downtown urban areas.
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Zoomed out to the 1-mile scale, the navigation system shows satellite imagery.
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BMW includes traffic data in its navigation system.
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BMW includes a Google search feature integrated with the navigation system, but this feature works through BMW's telematics service, not the ConnectedDrive app.
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The 640i Gran Coupe includes space for music on an internal hard drive, as well as connectivity to a driver's digital devices.
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This interface has always been a poor way to browse a music library, but BMW has added a feature called Browse Directory, which lets you more easily find music on a USB drive or other connected device.
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The playback screen shows album art if it is available.
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Among the broadcast audio sources, BMW now includes Web radio, a feature of its ConnectedDrive apps.
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The Web radio feature brings in Internet-based stations from all over the world.
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The Bang & Olufsen audio upgrade is worth the price, as it includes more detailed adjustments to sound through a seven-band graphic equalizer.
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The Bang & Olufsen audio system brings in 16 speakers and 1,200 watts of amplification, not to mention stylish metal speaker grilles.
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The Bluetooth phone system includes a messaging feature, which works with BlackBerrys and a few other phones.
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The Vehicle Info section of iDrive shows useful features, such as an online manual.

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