The next generation smaller BMW Convertible has been unveiled. The BMW 2-Series Convertible is the successor to the 1-Series droptop but joins the German brand’s slightly confusing new naming strategy.
The 1-Series Convertible dominated the market with little to compete within the smaller premium four seat category with over 130,000 sold worldwide. The 2-Series is clearly cut from the same cloth but is a little bigger all round. This has increased both the interior and luggage space, the latter made more versatile by folding rear seats allowing an optional through-loading system. The interior itself is smart and functional looking with body-colour ascents running along the dashboard.
The roof continues to be fabric providing good luggage space when folded and a stylish look when up. Power operated as standard, it folds in 20 seconds at speeds of ‘just over 30mph’ and has sound and temperature insulating layers.
With rear wheel drive and performance focused engines BMW aim to ensure the is 2-Series a sporting car to drive while less powerful options may be introduced in a few months. From launch the range starts with 2 litre petrol and diesel 220i and 220d options and various trim levels. The North American range starts with the 228i which has a turbocharged 2 litre petrol engine and performance gains with the official economy figure of 41.5mpg (manual) matching that of the 220i. The 228i comes with the option of xDrive all-wheel drive in some markets.
The range is topped by the BMW M235i Convertible which has 3 litre straight six engine aided by twin-scroll turbocharging to produce 326 horsepower and 450Nm of torque. The M235i can reach 62mph in just 5 seconds with the automatic gearbox or 5.2 from the stick-shif manual. Euro combined economy figures are relatively healthy at 33.2mpg for the manual and 35.8mpg for the auto. The normally optional M Sport suspension and braking system come as standard in the M235i which also has custom-tuned Variable Sport steering Those looking for further agility can opt for the BMW M Performance limited-slip differential.
With the new Audi A3 Cabriolet introduced earlier this year the competition is tougher this time around for the BMW. The Audi uses more efficient engines to make economy and emissions gains while the BMW looks to be more driver focussed.
The new BMW 2-Series Convertible will be available form early 2015 with prices ranging from £29,180 GBP on-the-road for a 220i Sport Convertible to £37,710 GBP or $48,650 USD for the M235i Convertible.