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      06-22-2012, 12:55 AM   #1
danielt
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Post 2013 M6 Coupe First Drive Review by Autoexpress

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By Matt Davis
June 2012
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We’ve already taken the new BMW M6 Convertible for a blast in California, and now we’ve hit the track in the M6 Coupe. So does the addition of a gorgeous, curved carbon-fibre roof make all the difference?

The 552bhp Coupe is fitted with the same 4.4-litre twin turbocharged V8 and seven-speed DCT transmission as the Convertible, but the car weighs 130kg less. Given the chance to stretch its legs at the track, it’s quickly clear how much better this car is to drive than its convertible sibling.

With less weight to lug around, and using the optional carbon-ceramic brakes fitted to our test car, the Coupe goes and stops with monumental force.

The low-down thrust from the turbo V8 is incredible; the M6 feels closer to a rumbling US muscle car than its highly strung V10 predecessor. It also means the newcomer is just as happy rolling round town in a high gear as it is lapping a track in anger.

When we drove the soft-top, we were left slightly disappointed by the lack of an exhaust note, and it’s quieter still in the Coupe. We’d expect, and welcome, more volume from an M car.

There’s nothing muted about the way the M6 drives, though. Once you’ve settled on one of the hundreds of possible combinations for the steering resistance, throttle response, traction control, gearshifts and suspension feel (we found Sport mode for everything worked perfectly on the road), it’s simply a matter of pointing the car at a corner, feeling the limits of the grip and blasting out the other side. It’s not subtle, but is very effective.

Of course, if you turn off all the electronic assistance systems, there’s a hooligan waiting to be unleashed, too.
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      06-22-2012, 09:22 AM   #2
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Pardon this 650xi driver creeping around on y'alls forum, but I enjoy living vicariously through all of you until I hit 25 and my insurance company no longer treats me like a ticking time bomb

I was intrigued by the comments here about the exhaust note. My M-tuned exhaust on my 650xi coupe is pretty impressive, but, understandably, the expectations on the M6 are likely higher than the regular 6er. I find it hard to believe that they called the M6's exhaust "disappointing." What do those of you with the car think? Also, does the M6 play the synthesized exhaust note through the sound system like the M5, or did they do away with that for the M6? I know that was controversial, so I'm curious. Thanks in advance.

Here are some videos from my blog I made showing the M Sport exhaust on the 650i.




Last edited by southern6er22; 06-22-2012 at 09:29 AM.
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      06-22-2012, 10:28 AM   #3
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I don't think your car nor the M sounds at all disappointing. And I'm in the same boat as you with the insurance scenario, they want to charge me $500 plus a month for a 2009 e60 M5...a new 650 coupe would make their heads explode. I've never had a wreck and only one ticket.. I'm just under 25 lol.

But your car looks awesome and sounds awesome, as do all BMWs!!
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      06-22-2012, 10:37 AM   #4
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It is interesting that press cars are showing up with the Ceramic brake option when it won't be available to purchase for quite some time yet.

Sounds like the car is a blast to drive though, as expected.
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      06-22-2012, 10:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southern6er22
Pardon this 650xi driver creeping around on y'alls forum, but I enjoy living vicariously through all of you until I hit 25 and my insurance company no longer treats me like a ticking time bomb

I was intrigued by the comments here about the exhaust note. My M-tuned exhaust on my 650xi coupe is pretty impressive, but, understandably, the expectations on the M6 are likely higher than the regular 6er. I find it hard to believe that they called the M6's exhaust "disappointing." What do those of you with the car think? Also, does the M6 play the synthesized exhaust note through the sound system like the M5, or did they do away with that for the M6? I know that was controversial, so I'm curious. Thanks in advance.

Here are some videos from my blog I made showing the M Sport exhaust on the 650i.



Where in Alabama do you live? Just asking because that looks precariously close to the roads I drive going back and fourth between Auburn and Huntsville.
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      06-22-2012, 11:08 AM   #6
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I don't think it that the new car sounds bad. Its just that it isn't on the same level as M cars of the past. Let alone the S85.
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      06-22-2012, 11:19 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
It is interesting that press cars are showing up with the Ceramic brake option when it won't be available to purchase for quite some time yet.

Sounds like the car is a blast to drive though, as expected.
Not really if you read the reviews from Autocar and Top Gear (Paul Horrell):

AUTOCAR:

"You can also shift the steeringís weighting across three modes, but in none does its stylish rim provide much info about grip and slip-angles, this tactile shortfall a disappointment in such a driver-oriented car.

So is the sometimes surprising lack of response from the transmission, even in the most hectic modes Ė often, itís better to paddle your way to performance.

Should I buy one?
These shortfalls, plus a ride likely to turn busy on British surfaces in sport, make a faintly less satisfying device of the M6 than it ought to be. Especially when it costs over £20k more than an M5, and much the same for a nimbler, if slower, 911."

Top Gear:

"So, big kudos to the M engineers for making a big and heavy car feel so friendly when itís in this unnatural environment. But really, theyíve missed the point. It never feels light. Worse, it never feels especially sharp. Itís not a sports car. Itís not, in the old sense, an M car.

All these things mean that on the road itís a staggeringly capable car but not a very captivating one. Really, what I want is a car that talks to me, rather than just has me along for the ride."
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      06-22-2012, 11:57 AM   #8
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Where in Alabama do you live? Just asking because that looks precariously close to the roads I drive going back and fourth between Auburn and Huntsville.
Mobile! I Grew up in Mobile and now am in Birmingham. Good to know some other Alabama folks are part of the community.
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      06-22-2012, 12:44 PM   #9
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Not really if you read the reviews from Autocar and Top Gear (Paul Horrell)
+1. I'm fearing that BMW is losing its way.

Everyone knows that Car & Driver are huge BMW fanboys and they even ranked the new M5 lower than its MB and Audi competition.

///Marketing is getting too much control and the direction of things isn't pretty. They even changed their slogan from "The ultimate driving machine" to "Joy" and it's showing.

Please BMW, whatever you're doing... stop doing it.
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      06-22-2012, 02:47 PM   #10
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Not really if you read the reviews from Autocar and Top Gear (Paul Horrell):
Everyone is entitled to an opinion of course.

I don't expect a 4200 lbs. car to feel like sports car. It just needs to be nimble for its size, and of course it should still be fast.

I consider my E93 a blast to drive, and despite the low revving engine in the new M vehicles, I bet they are a hoot to drive too. At least for me they would be.

Cheers.
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      06-22-2012, 04:06 PM   #11
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Everyone is entitled to an opinion of course.

I don't expect a 4200 lbs. car to feel like sports car. It just needs to be nimble for its size, and of course it should still be fast.

I consider my E93 a blast to drive, and despite the low revving engine in the new M vehicles, I bet they are a hoot to drive too. At least for me they would be.

Cheers.
I have no doubt that it would be fun to drive in the same way that any +500hp car would be, but my main problem with this car is that it keeps moving farther away from what an M car should be (or used to be).

The reason why I fell in love with BMW M cars was due to the level of performance, daily driver usability, and more importantly, a level of driver involvement usually reserved for much more expensive pure sports cars.

Unfortunately this latest generation of M cars (new M5, M6, X5M, X6M) seem to have forgotten that key characteristic and therefore are moving away from what made them so brilliant for so many years.

As eisenb11 said in his post above, it seems that the marketing department is having too much influence in the decisions being made at BMW M.

I really hope that the upcoming M3 breaks drastically away from this trend, but something tells me that it won't.
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      06-22-2012, 06:12 PM   #12
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As eisenb11 said in his post above, it seems that the marketing department is having too much influence in the decisions being made at BMW M.
I don't think the marketing division at BMW is the reason for the lack of driver involvement. It's the new path that BMW has been taking ever since the F10 debuted. The introduction of classiness into BMW cars and the dual personality of the newer BMWs are having a great effect on BMW M. You can't have a super efficient classy comfortable car yet it has or sounds like that ferrous V10. It seems that BMW is going after older people, kinda like what Merc was doing before. I know, it isn't BMW's plan to go after old people but it's the damned efficiencies and turbocharging (not that turbos are wrong or for gay people) that is killing BMW M.

Just my 2 cents.
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BMW have tapped into this by mirroring typical BMW dynamics and steering communication within the new UKL cars.
You mean massive body roll, a steering system that is not connected to the front wheels, and the engine note played through the speaker system?!?!?!?!
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      06-22-2012, 08:04 PM   #13
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Funny thing is at the same time, AMG and S/RS cars are getting better and better at making their chassis' and having driver involvement in their cars. If this keeps up then give them 1 more generation and they will be on top.
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      06-22-2012, 08:17 PM   #14
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And I'm in the same boat as you with the insurance scenario, they want to charge me $500 plus a month for a 2009 e60 M5...a new 650 coupe would make their heads explode. I've never had a wreck and only one ticket.. I'm just under 25 lol. But your car looks awesome and sounds awesome, as do all BMWs!!
Thanks! I'm pretty much in love with my car... which is reflected by my fuel consumption

Quote:
Originally Posted by mkoesel View Post
It is interesting that press cars are showing up with the Ceramic brake option when it won't be available to purchase for quite some time yet.

Sounds like the car is a blast to drive though, as expected.
Apparently all of the M5s at the PC have the ceramic brake option. I'm wondering if it is a material shortage or provider issue of some sort? Idk a single thing about the engineering of ceramic brakes, but I doubt it's a delay with development since they put them on all of these demo cars.

I'm going to the PC for the 2-day school in January, and I can't wait to see how the M5 and M6 drive. The 650xi is more car than I need for a daily driver (not that I'd turn down an M6 ), so the M6 will be a great treat for track use.

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Where in Alabama do you live? Just asking because that looks precariously close to the roads I drive going back and fourth between Auburn and Huntsville.
Mobile. I agree that these roads do look very similar to just about every other (boring lol) interstate-adjacent part of the state.

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Mobile! I Grew up in Mobile and now am in Birmingham. Good to know some other Alabama folks are part of the community.
Not many of us around these forums. I've crossed paths with only one or two other Bama boys on Bimmerfest and Bimmerpost. Sad that the South (sans FL) has very little representation.

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I don't expect a 4200 lbs. car to feel like sports car. It just needs to be nimble for its size, and of course it should still be fast.
I don't think anyone expects the M6 to be a true competitor to the 911 as a "sports car" - physics dictates that given the size difference. BMW's engineers are just astonishing at defying what one would think is physically possible. I think a lot of people cross-shop the two cars while knowing good and well that they are not the same type of car - that's how I felt anyway. For me, the 6er was a much better fit for my daily driving needs than a 911. I'm never taking my car on a track, so I'd much rather deal with a little extra weight and have nav., 10 different audio sources, 20-way comfort seats, a cavernous trunk, a zillion speakers, and a huge sunroof.

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I really hope that the upcoming M3 breaks drastically away from this trend, but something tells me that it won't.
The article posted a couple days ago about this being the end of a true manual in the M5 mentioned that the M3 will always have a stick. I think that's a good sign for the ///M line, albeit a bit disappointing for the M5 and M6. I have the 8-speed auto in my 650xi, and it is brilliant. Even though I didn't go for the manual, I do appreciate that they made the 6-speed manual available as it speaks to the sporting heritage of BMW. Sadly that will be discontinued for 2013, if I remember correctly.
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      06-23-2012, 12:41 AM   #15
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Hey Guys Just thinking about an M6, for now. But our 650i Coupe is really nice and I don't know if it's really worth the extra $$$$$ ???
A 2&1/2 ton car, 400+HP and we're getting over 23MPG on a 4&1/2 hr trip!!!!! How cool is that??
I'm still old school, KMs is where I live but mileage I only know in MPG's!!!.......................................... ....... and yes, it's raining!!! Must clean the wheels again...argh!!!

And my 2 cents............ BMW is only marketing whatever it sells!! In Canada. only xDrive and no 6 speeds for the 2012!! Gidgets & Gazmos is what the people with the $$$ have to spend it on and BMW is "fine tuning" their market. I agree.......... 3-series will be the only stick car in their future!!
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      06-23-2012, 07:03 AM   #16
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Where in Alabama do you live? Just asking because that looks precariously close to the roads I drive going back and fourth between Auburn and Huntsville.

Mobile! I Grew up in Mobile and now am in Birmingham. Good to know some other Alabama folks are part of the community.[



(Mobile, AL) guy here as well.

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      06-23-2012, 01:33 PM   #17
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It s funny how some journalists expect to "feel" an M6 as it would be an 1M or an M3 Coupe...
Let's put it near its class rivals (Merc CL AMG, Bentley GT, Jag XKR-S, etc.) and after that we can have a realistic conclusion!
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      06-24-2012, 03:46 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Funny thing is at the same time, AMG and S/RS cars are getting better and better at making their chassis' and having driver involvement in their cars. If this keeps up then give them 1 more generation and they will be on top.

What I noticed is BMW was 60% sport and 40% luxury before while MB was 60% luxury and 40% sport. Now theyre both moving towards 50/50 more. I guess BMW noticed most of their customers are younger and perhaps with all the new safety regulations cars will become more and more expensive because of technology. For BMW to make money in the future they have to shift to older people with more money which is the market MB holds more of. If you look at the asian markets they like MB a lot more than BMW because MB is considered more luxurious yet they dont know the comparison between the performance figures between the two. I am sure everyone has noticed the increase in visual and physical appeal in BMW now vs the past. MB on the other hand is increasing their sporty aspect of their cars because that is what their cars lack and what everyone who knows cars complain about. Their line up is more expensive than BMW but their driving feel is no where close. Sure their fitament and quality may be better but they make cars like the SLS, CL AMG, and SL AMG that are all over 150k which at that price range demands great driving feel. So I feel BMW is investing more money on visual and physical appeals than the sporty aspect while the competition is going towards developing a sporty character in their cars. BMW pretty much traded too much for visual appeal too much at once. Just what I think. Sorry I was watching a movie while typing this so its prob not that clear/direct/or even makes sense.
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      06-24-2012, 04:07 PM   #19
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The sound, hugh? I don't know that I have the windows open often enough to care...LOL
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      06-24-2012, 08:18 PM   #20
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The sound, hugh? I don't know that I have the windows open often enough to care...LOL
I use the driving dynamics control toggle switch to control the noise. If I want it screaming (windows open or closed), then I put it in Sport. If I want to mute it (typically because I see a cop ), then I switch to Comfort. I like having that control.
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