We’ve already taken the new BMW M6 Convertible for a blast in California, and now we’ve hit the track in the M6 Coupe. So does the addition of a gorgeous, curved carbon-fibre roof make all the difference?
The 552bhp Coupe is fitted with the same 4.4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 and seven-speed DCT transmission as the Convertible, but the car weighs 130kg less. Given the chance to stretch its legs at the track, it’s quickly clear how much better this car is to drive than its convertible sibling.
With less weight to lug around, and using the optional carbon-ceramic brakes fitted to our test car, the Coupe goes and stops with monumental force.
The low-down thrust from the turbo V8 is incredible; the M6 feels closer to a rumbling US muscle car than its highly strung V10 predecessor. It also means the newcomer is just as happy rolling round town in a high gear as it is lapping a track in anger.
When we drove the soft-top, we were left slightly disappointed by the lack of an exhaust note, and it’s quieter still in the Coupe. We’d expect, and welcome, more volume from an M car.
There’s nothing muted about the way the M6 drives, though. Once you’ve settled on one of the hundreds of possible combinations for the steering resistance, throttle response, traction control, gearshifts and suspension feel (we found Sport mode for everything worked perfectly on the road), it’s simply a matter of pointing the car at a corner, feeling the limits of the grip and blasting out the other side. It’s not subtle, but is very effective.
Of course, if you turn off all the electronic assistance systems, there’s a hooligan waiting to be unleashed, too.