Europeans tend to get all of the unique cars, particularly those from BMW, Mercedes, and Audi. Today BMW upped that count by one more with the release of the first-ever seven-seat, premium compact car: the 2015 2 Series Gran Tourer.
This seven-seat hatchback features three rows of seats, with the third row also having the ability to fold into the floor to create a flat cargo area. For those times when you need just a few more inches of space, the second row slides fore and aft by 5.1 inches to give you extra cargo room or legroom. This gives the new 2 Series the ability to swallow 19.8 to 64.3 cubic feet of cargo, matching many small SUVs.
This tiny family hauler comes in five versions, each with a different powerplant, giving buyers plenty of options to choose from. The base model is the 218i, which starts at £24,175, and it comes with a 1.5-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine that produces 136 horsepower and 220 Nm of torque. This base model can hit 62 mph in 9.8 seconds, which is respectable considering its 53.3 mpg rating. The next model is the £27,490 220i, which comes with a 2.0-liter gasoline engine that delivers 192 horsepower and 280 Nm of torque to get the hatchback to 62 mph in just 7.9 seconds. The 220i is also not too shabby in terms of fuel economy at 44.8 mpg.
The diesel lineup begins with the £25,110 216d, which carries a 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 116 horsepower and 270 Nm of torque. This oil-burner gets the 216d to 62 mph in 11.4 seconds while turning in 68.9 mpg. The 218d, which runs £26,255 gets an uprated 2.0-liter diesel that develops 150 horses and 330 Nm of twist. This added power gets the 218d to 62 mph in 9.5 seconds, but its fuel economy drops to 64.2 mpg. The range-topping 220d xDrive not only milks 190 horsepower and 400 Nm out of its 2.0-liter diesel, but it also gets all-wheel drive. This drivetrain gets the hatchback to 62 mph in 7.8 seconds and still delivers a thrifty 57.6 mpg. Jumping into this top-of-the-range model bumps the price to £32,005.
There is no mention of the 2 Series Gran Tourer making it to the U.S., and I highly doubt it ever will.