Kitsch or cool?
Shortly after a premature leak, the 2022 BMW 2 Series was finally unveiled, and it's been a hot topic of discussion, although not necessarily for the right reasons. The styling is controversial, to say the least, and it won't be offered with a manual gearbox. Still, we find solace in the fact that that controversial styling is supposedly inspired by the 2002 and the fact that the car is still a RWD-based machine. Looks aside, our interest in the coupe is keen, and this interest has led us to the build & price configurator on BMW UK's site, where we found an interesting detail.
In the press photos that BMW supplied us with, we could see a section behind the door speakers and above the window controls where a textured panel lay with backlighting that appeared to flow with the other ambient lighting accents of the cabin. It looks cool and is a nice touch, but it seems that we haven't been shown all of its capabilities, as the UK build site shows that this panel can display the M tricolor design in a splashy, pixelated look. Now it's unclear if this is something that buyers will be able to configure in the car's settings or if its's a UK-only addition.
What we can tell you is that we found this on the base 220i, as the M340i xDrive and our 230i have not yet been added to the site. The site also only allows for M Sport spec, so we can't tell you if this will be available on lesser, Individual models.
With car cabins getting more digital by the day, it's no much of a surprise to see this sort of design feature being added to the car, but it is interesting that this is being seen for the first time on a base-spec car and not a full M car. With the new 2 Series being the only 2022 offering to get access to that new Thundernight Metallic paint, it seems that BMW is looking to make its cheaper models look and feel more exclusive, and that we can't find fault with.