BMW M6 Convertible

26 Jul, 2012 11:00am Paul Bond

We get behind the wheel of the all-new 552bhp BMW M6 Convertible on UK roads for the first time

Verdict

3
The BMW M6 Convertible is one of the most complete cars in this class. Its wide range of talents makes it just as capable at covering long distances in comfort as it is blasting down a country lane. Despite its sledgehammer performance it lacks the pin-sharp focus of the 911 Cabriolet or the drama of the Bentley GTC – and it’s priced to go up against both.

The M brand has expanded to include ‘performance’ models as diverse as the M135i hot hatch and X6 M50d, but the heart of the range is still full-blooded muscle cars such as the all-new M6 Convertible.

It left us a little cold when we first tested it in the US, so how will it fare on UK roads? First impressions are good, as the roofless M6 packs far more visual punch than the M5 on which it’s based.

The long, sweeping bonnet and pumped-up bodykit give the M6 serious presence, while the 19-inch alloys hide massive brakes. These come with either steel or optional carbon ceramic discs that shave an extra 20kg off the weight but cost £7,395.

With a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 that delivers 680Nm of torque, you’ll need all the stopping power you can get – and taking the roof off has done nothing to blunt performance. The drop-top is just one tenth slower than the coupe from 0-62mph, with a time of 4.3 seconds, and they share the same limited 155mph top speed.

On tight country lanes, the M6 does feel big and wide, though, and that can make you a little tentative when pressing on. But the imposing size means that this is one of the few 2+2 coupes which can fit adults in the rear seats, although the boot is still quite small with the fabric roof stowed. The inviting cabin is draped with carbon fibre and feels beautifully made.

Grip is incredible, and the ride is supple and controlled. Yet no matter how much you fiddle with the settings for the steering, suspension and gearbox, the M6 always feels merely very capable rather than captivating.

Key specs

  • Price: £114,990 (as tested)
  • Engine: 4.4-litre twin-turbo V8 petrol
  • Power/torque: 552bhp/680Nm
  • 0-62mph: 4.3 seconds
  • Top speed: 155mph (limited)
  • Economy: 27.4mpg
  • C02: 239g/km
  • Equipment: 19-inch alloys, dual-zone climate control, sports seats, quad exhausts, variable dampers
  • On sale: Now
AEX 1330
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