BEST of the BEST 2014 | Wheels | Sedans: BMW M6 Gran Coupe

Two, two, two cars in one...

The sport-sedan category now includes models from manufacturers as diverse as Aston Martin and Volkswagen. Everyone, it seems, has a svelte, pillarless design for buyers who want a vehicle that offers sports-car performance and the comfort and convenience of a full-size four- or five-door. BMW was late to arrive with its four-door coupe design, the Gran Coupe, whose introduction in 2012 trailed the launch of Mercedes-Benz’s CLS by almost a decade. But shortly thereafter, BMW issued an M variant, which finished first among the sedans at Robb Report’s Car of the Year contest in November.

It is not surprising that the M6 Gran Coupe impressed so many judges. The car is a real do-it-all. It is essentially the rear-wheel-drive M6 Coupe with rear doors, more legroom for rear-seat passengers, and an extra 170 pounds. The additional doors and space (and weight) do not dull the car’s performance or handling dynamics, but they do offer the four-about-town versatility that the two-door version, with its cramped rear quarters, lacks.

Exterior features unique to the M variant of the Gran Coupe include a carbon-fiber roof, which obviates the option of a sunroof but provides an impressive expanse of the beautiful lightweight composite, and an aggressive-looking front fascia that will seemingly mouth the letter M when viewed in other motorists’ rear-view mirrors.

With a zero-to-60-mph time of just 4.1 seconds, the M6 Gran Coupe is as blisteringly quick as the M6 Coupe. The 4.4-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine in the car’s base version produces 560 hp and 500 ft lbs of torque and enables the car to reach its limited top speed of 155 mph with ease. A 7-speed double-clutch automated manual transmission is standard. The M6 Gran Coupe’s starting price is $115,000, but the addition of such options as the Competition Package, which increases the engine’s output to 575 hp; carbon-ceramic brakes; and a Bang & Olufsen sound system can raise the price to nearly $137,000.

BMW, www.bmwusa.com

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