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2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe

$35,300 - $47,800
Price Range (MSRP)
BMW 2 Series Coupe

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Review: Compromise Is An Exciting Concept

by Roger Biermann

Small, premium coupes don't get much better than what we're reviewing today. The BMW 2 Series has made a name for itself as one of the few cars the Bavarian firm offers that rekindles the spirit of the E30. Powerful, agile, perfectly balanced, and just the right size for its purpose, there are four models available: the 230i - with a two-liter four-cylinder turbo sending 248 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels - and the M240i, which is fitted with a turbocharged three-liter straight-six producing 335 hp and 369 lb-ft, and two xDrive variants offering an extra pair of driven wheels. Both of these are available with a standard eight-speed automatic gearbox, but on rear-wheel-drive models, BMW even gives you the option of a no-cost six-speed manual gearbox. Ownership starts from $35,300 but can easily exceed $50k if you tick the right boxes, but that sticks it right in the middle of the competition, which includes a strange mix of cars like the Audi TT and Audi A3 Sedan, as well as the Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class.

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Changes: What’s the difference vs 2019 2 Series Coupe?

BMW created a winning recipe with these cars, the M240i being so good that, in all-wheel-drive form, it can stick with its big brother, the M2, in terms of straight-line speed, while it's also extremely capable around the track. With such a great formula, not much has changed from the 2019 model. The 230i gets black kidney-grille surrounds, while the M240i gets black mirror caps, Cerium Grey grille accents as well as a matte carbon interior trim option. All interiors now offer Dakota leather, while the rear showcases mildly-tinted taillights. Long Beach Blue paint is also now available, while the features list has rain sensors as standard across the range.

Pros and Cons

  • Powerful yet impressively economical engine options
  • Smooth ride
  • Sharp handling
  • Premium interior feel
  • Large trunk
  • Sporty styling
  • Numerous standard features
  • Cramped rear seat
  • Higher price than some will be willing to pay for its size
  • If you didn't like the 2019 model, the new one is not much different

2 Series Coupe Exterior

The 2 Series is blessed with classic proportions: a long, sweeping hood leads to the two-door cabin, the sloping roofline of which blends into a short trunk, while a high waistline adds muscularity to the side-profile. 230i models are fitted with 17-inch wheels, LED headlights and fog lights, while M240i models feature 18-inch rims, a subtle spoiler, a more aerodynamically sculpted pair of bumpers and a unique exhaust exit layout, with one pipe on either end of the rear apron.

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Front View
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Rear View
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Front Angle View
See All 2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Exterior Photos

Dimensions

The 230i is predictably lighter than the M240i, but also fractionally shorter thanks to its bumpers. The 230i measures 174.7 inches long, 69.8 inches wide, and 55.8 inches tall, while the M240i is slightly lower at 55.4 inches and a bit longer at 175.9 inches. The wheelbase is identical at 105.9 inches across the range. Rear-wheel-drive manual 230i's start at 3,380 lbs, with autos just six pounds heavier. The xDrive variant weighs 3,512 lbs. M240i's weigh in at 3,519 lbs with the eight-speed auto, while stick-shift versions are oddly claimed to weigh more: 3,554 lbs, but don't worry if performance is your concern - the manual is just 0.2-seconds adrift of its automatic stablemate to the 0 to 60 mph benchmark. The auto-only xDrive variant tops out the weight rankings at 3,662 lbs.

Exterior Colors

230i models have a choice of 10 colors, with Alpine White and Jet Black being the only no-charge options. Metallic colors will cost $550 and include the magnificent rouge of Melbourne Red, with Glacier Silver, Mineral White, Mineral Grey, Seaside Blue, and Sunset Orange also available. Estoril Blue is only available on the 230i if you tick the M Sport package. M240i models do without Jet Black, Melbourne Red, Seaside Blue, or Glacier Silver, but can be painted in Long Beach Blue - our favorite in the M240i's lineup. Alpine White is, again, a free color option. All colors are available on regular 2 Series models as well as on xDrive versions too.

  • Black Sapphire Metallic
  • Mineral White Metallic
  • Mineral Grey Metallic
  • Glacier Silver Metallic
  • Seaside Blue Metallic
  • Melbourne Red Metallic
  • Estoril Blue Metallic
  • Sunset Orange Metallic
  • Long Beach Blue Metallic
  • Alpine White
  • Jet Black

2 Series Coupe Performance

All auto models will accelerate quicker than the manual versions thanks, in part, to quicker shifts, but also because the ZF-sourced eight-speed has been tuned to accommodate launch control, which manual versions do without. For sprints, the M240i xDrive is the best choice, launching from 0-60 mph in just 4.2 seconds. Rear-wheel-drive variants with a manual box will manage 4.6 seconds, which is quick enough to match an Audi S3 with Quattro all-wheel-drive and an S-tronic dual-clutch transmission. M240i autos are 0.2 seconds quicker. These astonishing figures are thanks to a 335 hp inline-six TwinPower turbo engine which produces 269 lb-ft of twist. The 230i loses two cylinders and one liter of capacity but still produces 248 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque, and is no slouch; as a result, the 0-60 mph sprint is dispatched as quickly as 5.2 seconds in the all-wheel-drive xDrive model. It takes 5.3 seconds in the automatic rear-wheel-drive while the manual shifter adds 0.2 seconds to that total. All 2 Series coupes are limited to 130 mph, but when performance tires are added and the limiter moved, models with xDrive manage 149 and rear-wheel-drive variants top out at 155.

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Front View Driving
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Rear View Driving
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Engine

Engine and Transmission

The base model in the lineup, the 230i, is fitted with a two-liter inline-four that is turbocharged to produce 248 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque. An eight-speed automatic is standard, but a six-speed manual is a no-cost option on all models. Despite being the entry-level option in the range, this model is still thoroughly infused with BMW DNA. Acceleration is strong and smooth, better than we'd expect from most two-liters. The gearbox options are fantastic, with the manual clicking reassuringly into place through every gear, its clutch feel being perfectly weighted. As much as the purists in the office hate to admit it, the eight-speed auto is arguably even better. Yes, you lose a little bit of the engagement by excluding your left foot from the equation, but this 'box is phenomenal. In traffic and daily driving, the auto is free of the shudder and creep that plagues many a dual-clutch system used by other brands, but when you put your foot down, the 'box somehow knows exactly what the right gear is and engages it immediately. Shift it into manual mode and gear changes are so smooth and quick that you wonder if the transmission is reading your mind. Making the best use of this duality in comfort and performance is the M240i's multi-award-winning B58 engine shared with the new Supra. Here it also produces 335 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque, although it feels like more and is not afraid to rev - a pleasant surprise, considering the turbocharged nature of the three-liter powerplant.

  • Engines
    2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 3.0-liter Turbo Inline-6 Gas
  • Transmission
    8-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    AWD, RWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

Typically well balanced, all BMW models aim for an almost perfect 50/50 weight distribution. The M240i features adaptive M suspension and dynamic traction control, which can be partially turned off to allow a little bit of slip and slide, or completely deactivated for your best Mustang crowd-control impersonations. Driving modes include Eco Pro, which obviously aims to save fuel, or Comfort for the smoothest shifts and most supple suspension tuning, Sport is aimed at more spirited driving styles and Sport+ increases maximum throttle response and suspension firmness. The 2 Series' chassis is, as with classic BMW's, even more impressive than its engine. Turn-in is sharp, and the entire car feels nimble and intuitive, with mid-corner bumps doing little to unsettle the car. If it were the star of an action movie, this coupe would be more akin to Bruce Lee than Dolf Lundgren, stylishly and precisely communicating that everything is under control. When you've had enough of being a hero, the brakes are infallible, with great response and well-modulated bite. Of course, as with Bruce Lee, too much white, er, smoke, can lead to things going out of control. Don't be fooled - it is still possible to get into trouble in this car, but the signs are there and the car lets you know when you're pushing your luck.

2 Series Coupe Gas Mileage

The less performance-focused 230i is typically more economical on fuel when paired with the auto and the lighter rear-wheel-drive setup. This model returns 24/32/27 mpg on the city/highway/combined cycles, equating to an average estimated range of 369.9 miles per 13.7-gallon tank of gas. The manual scores 21/32/25 mpg, with the xDrive model not far behind at 21/31/24 mpg on the same cycles. M240i autos in both all-wheel-drive and rear-wheel-drive format manage 22/30/25 mpg, with manual M240i RWD's doing 19/27/22 mpg. Those looking for a fun, performance-enhanced sports car may be considering something like the Mustang GT - but in terms of economy, this missile from Munich is far more smartly developed.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    13.7 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 24/32 mpg
* 2020 BMW 2 Series 230i Coupe

2 Series Coupe Interior

The 2 Series is the cheapest coupe in the BMW lineup but is still distinctly Bavarian when you get in. Slip into the 10-way power-adjustable front seats with optional heating (the steering wheel can be heated too), and you are greeted by a familiar layout and high-quality materials that are solidly affixed to all panels. Everything is tilted slightly towards the driver and in easy reach, with an easy-to-learn layout and simple controls. Infotainment comprises a 6.5-inch screen with seven speakers as standard, although both can be upgraded. Headroom and legroom are surprisingly good, with even six-footers being hospitably seated; rear-seat perches should typically be filled by small children, though. Optional leather upholstery and a wide range of trim choices further elevate the ambiance of the interior.

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Dashboard
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Driver Seat
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Driver Seat
See All 2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

The 2 Series is typically unaccommodating in the rear, as with most coupes on the market. A pair of your spawn can fit there, but your friends likely won't appreciate being stuffed into the back. Up front is a different story. You sit low, but not so deep that it would make seeing the corners of the car difficult. With a multitude of power adjustments, 10 in total with two lumbar settings, those with their heads in the clouds will find a perfect seating position just as easily as those who are vertically challenged. The pedals are well-spaced, and the tilt-and-telescopic steering wheel is simple to adjust. Getting in and out is similarly chore-free thanks to a wide opening. The doors are also not as long as they are on something like a Mustang, so car parks will not be your enemy.

  • Seating capacity
    4-seater

Interior Colors and Materials

The interior does a pretty good impression of leather with BMW's synthetic material dubbed SensaTec. It's available in a cream color for the seats and door inserts, or full black. Optional Dakota leather is available in the same colors or black with red highlights and red stitching; full Coral Red, Oyster, or Cognac are the other choices available at $1,450. Dash, center console, and door handle trim variations add no extra cost, unless you option Fine Wood with Pearl Chrome Accent at $350. Aluminum hexagons with either blue or gloss black highlights and matte carbon fiber are other options to add on.

2 Series Coupe Trunk and Cargo Space

The trunk is surprisingly voluminous for the segment, with 13.8 cubic feet. The much larger Mustang GT only manages 13.5 cubes and is considered decent for its size. A pair of medium to large suitcases will be easily accommodated, and there will still be leftover volume for carry-on bags. Should you require more, the rear seats can fold in a 60/40 split, or the center can be opened as a pass-through for skis and the like.

Numerous cubbies and storage spaces are dotted around the interior, including a bin between the front seats and a tray between the rear. A pair of cupholders sit below the air-conditioning controls with more in the rear armrest, while the driver and passenger both have door bins and storage units in front of them, the driver's being offset below and to the left of the steering wheel.

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Rear Angle View
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Rear View Driving
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Side View
  • Trunk Volume
    13.8 ft³

2 Series Coupe Infotainment and Features

Features

Numerous safety features are included, such as forward collision warning with automatic braking at town speeds, lane departure warning, and a driver alert feature to monitor drowsiness. Other features include front and rear parking sensors as standard, along with a rearview camera, dynamic cruise control, keyless entry and ignition, power seats and auto-dimming rearview mirrors - both of which have memory. Rain sensing wipers are standard across the range for 2020. Three 12-volt power sockets also feature in the cabin. Dual-zone automatic climate control is fitted to all models, while options include a sunroof, heated steering wheel, heated front seats, adaptive headlights, and a parking assistant. Auto models also include launch control as standard.

Infotainment

BMW's iDrive is ever-present in Munich's offerings, here connected to a 6.5-inch screen with Bluetooth and USB connectivity. HD Radio is standard, with SiriusXM available on 230i models and standard on M240i variants. Apple CarPlay is also available, but not Android Auto. A seven-speaker sound system is standard, but can be upgraded to a 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio setup with five tweeters for the high range, five mid-range speakers, and two subwoofers for low-end bass, positioned under the seats. Navigation is also available, along with real-time traffic updates, and will increase the infotainment screen size to 8.8-inches. Finally, wireless charging and WiFi can be added for $500.

2 Series Coupe Problems and Reliability

The 2020 BMW 2 Series coupe fell victim to one recall in May of 2019 due to a knee airbag that potentially would not deploy properly. No other recalls have been issued since. Although not yet rated for 2020 by J.D. Power for reliability, the 2019 model year was rated at 87 out of 100.

A four-year/50,000-mile warranty covers the coupe from head to toe, with four years of unconditional roadside assistance included, too. A 12-year rust warranty is also included with all new BMW models.

2 Series Coupe Safety

The 2020 2 Series has not yet been rated with the NHTSA or IIHS, but the latter did review the 2019 model and awarded it the best possible score of Good in its overall evaluation. With a full list of safety features and numerous advanced driver assists, there is some peace of mind to be had for the 2 Series coupe's ability to keep you safe.

Key Safety Features

Park sensors all round are standard, but highlights include lane departure warning, forward collision warning with automatic braking, and a driver alert system to detect drowsiness. In the unenviable event that you do crash, the car will disconnect the alternator and starter from the battery, disable the fuel pump to prevent fire or spread thereof, unlock the doors to make it easier to extricate occupants, and turn on the interior and hazard lights to make the car a beacon for emergency services. Adaptive cruise control is also available, and dual front and side airbags are standard along with knee airbags for front occupants. Automatic seatbelt pretensioners are stock fitted.

Verdict: Is the 2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe a good car?

For its size and power, the 2 Series is surprisingly spacious and economical. It's also well-equipped and beautifully balanced, even in base form. Options of drivetrain and transmission are becoming increasingly rare, but the 2 Series still offers them. Numerous safety features and a comfortable, whisper-quiet interior are also notable. The main thing, though, is how it performs. Even the base 230i is an excellent sports coupe, with enough grunt to satisfy most - something rare in entry-level coupes. The price may seem a little high, but when compared to its rivals and what this uber-refined car is capable of, it's actually quite reasonable. For maximum thrills, the M240i satisfies every desire while still managing to be a useful daily driver. You don't need to go all out to appreciate the car's balance or risk jail-time to have fun. It's also understated enough to fly under the radar of those with decibel-meters while denoting a sense of class that only a premium German coupe can properly execute. Plus, the badge-snobbery that comes with owning a BMW is hard to ignore. We'd take one in a heartbeat.

What's the Price of the 2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe?

The rear-wheel-drive 230i starts at $35,300 before taxes, fees and BMW's $995 destination charge is added. No charge is placed on the specification of automatic or manual gearboxes. The 230i xDrive starts at $37,300 and is only available with the auto option. Moving up to the M240i will cost $45,800, while the M240i xDrive costs $2,000 more. Fully loaded, this model will set you back $55,670, including destination.

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Models

The 2 Series is available in numerous variations, but in coupe form, the range comprises four models: 230i, 230i xDrive, M240i, and M240i xDrive.

The 230i is available with either an eight-speed automatic or a six-speed manual and sends 248 hp to the rear wheels. 17-inch wheels, LED headlights and fog lights, dual-zone automatic climate control, and keyless entry & ignition are stand-out features. Forward collision warning, lane departure warning, and driver alert are included. Power-adjustable seats, a 6.5-inch infotainment screen, and parking sensors are also standard with a choice of 10 available colors. The 230i xDrive is identical in every way except that power is sent to all four wheels, and no manual option is available.

The M240i is similar to the 230i in that it too is fitted with either an auto or a manual and sends its power to the rear. However, it does not have fog lights and instead has more aerodynamic bumpers, a 3.0-liter inline-six turbocharged engine producing 87 hp more, and 18-inch wheels. Satellite radio is also standard, along with a sunroof, rear spoiler, bigger brakes, and adaptive suspension. Seven colors are available here, with one being unique in the range. The xDrive version of the M240i again adds all-wheel-drive and deletes the manual gearbox option.

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
230i Coupe
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
$35,300
230i xDrive Coupe
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
$37,300
M240i Coupe
3.0-liter Turbo Inline-6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
$45,800
M240i xDrive Coupe
3.0-liter Turbo Inline-6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
$47,800
See All 2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Trims and Specs

Additional Packages

The 230i is available with most of the M240i's standard equipment and can be specced with the M Sport package for $4,550 to add keyless entry, SiriusXM, Shadowline exterior trim, a rear spoiler, sunroof, and a whole variety of M-themed accessories including an aerodynamic kit. The Track Handling package, for $2,300, can also be added, which upgrades the steering, suspension, and brakes. The $2,050 Convenience package adds an auto-dimming rearview mirror, keyless entry, sunroof, satellite radio, and ambient lighting. Ticking the box for the Premium package will add a heated steering wheel, a garage door opener, heated seats, navigation with traffic and Apple CarPlay, all yours for $2,500. Standalone options include a nifty $200 parking assistant, adaptive LED headlights for $800, and wireless charging for $500. An 8.8-inch navigation upgrade will set you back $1,700, while a heated steering wheel costs $190 and heated seats add 500 greenbacks to your invoice.

What BMW 2 Series Coupe Model Should I Buy?

Unless you live in an area perennially plagued by inclement weather or otherwise slippery conditions, we'd suggest skipping the xDrive models and opting for a rear-wheel-drive 2 Series instead. Acceleration is not much different, and you have the option of stirring your own gears. That said, the ZF eight-speed auto is so good that we have to admit it makes sense for a daily driver, and it works brilliantly as a performance enhancement tool. We'd have an M240i, offering arguably better looks than the regular 230i, more standard equipment, a host of performance upgrades - including that peach of an engine - and the same practicality of the regular 2 Series coupe. The M240i is an all-rounder that doesn't feel like a compromise, and is therefore perfect.

Check out other BMW 2 Series Styles?

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe Comparisons

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe
2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe vs Audi A3 Sedan

The Audi A3 is an interesting comparison for the 2 Series. As with the 2 Series, you can have a convertible, but no other two-door option is available. Instead, the A3 is sold as a sedan, with the base model featuring a less-powerful engine and the top trim being only ten horsepower more powerful than the Bimmer's base variant. This top model features a two-liter engine which, despite making less power only manages to achieve the same mpg ratings as the top trim M240i. The A3 is also not available with a manual, and despite its fractionally greater length, offers less legroom for front occupants too. With base models featuring front-wheel-drive, and higher trims offering front-biased Quattro, the BMW is more engaging to drive. The trunk is smaller as well, and LED headlights cost extra. Overall, the BMW is a far better, more dynamic, and unusually more practical car than the A3 - unless you regularly ferry additional passengers in the rear. We'll have the 2 Series, thanks.

See Audi A3 Sedan Review

2020 BMW 2 Series Coupe vs BMW 3 Series Sedan

Those looking for a refined yet sporty drive may look to the 3 Series as an option. Since the dawn of time, or at least since its release in 1975, the 3 Series has always been the benchmark in its segment, offering supreme handling sprinkled with a fair dose of comfort, composure, and charisma. Recently redesigned, the 3 has moved the goalposts even further, offering more features and the same brilliant handling. That said, it has swelled considerably, and the 2 Series is more similar to the earlier E30. Yet even with its larger footprint, the latest-generation 3 Series makes more power and offers better fuel economy and it's more practical too. Starting at a smidge over 40 grand, it's $5,000 more expensive than the base 230i, which is a lot more car for the money. If you value practicality, the new 3 is, without a doubt, the vastly superior option. While the 2 Series is still an outstanding car, its rear seating limits its breadth of capability, and the 3 Series soundly trumps it.

See BMW 3 Series Sedan Review

BMW 2 Series Coupe Popular Comparisons