Shopping for a new BMW 6-Series?
SEE LOCAL CLASSIFIEDS
TheCarConnection.com's editors bring you their own expert opinion from behind the wheel of the 2010 BMW 6-Series for this Bottom Line. To help make the most informed buying decision possible, TheCarConnection.com has also researched and compiled the available road tests on the 2010 6-Series, including its M6 alter ego, for the Full Review.
The 2010 BMW 6-Series carries forward from its minor revisions in the 2008 and 2009 model years, adding a few minor upgrades, including an updated navigation system and new interior and exterior styling options from BMW Individual.
A swooping, aerodynamic front end leads to a rather thick and squat rear end that, despite previous restyling attempts, still seems at odds with the rest of the design. Front LED lights and bi-xenon headlights give the car a thoroughly modern look at night. Inside, styling is less objectionable and every bit as elegant as you'd expect, with wood and leather trim, especially with the BMW Individual updates for 2010, bringing a luxurious feel to the cabin. Complex electronic controls and features get in the way of the elegant styling at times, however, due to a proliferation of buttons and knobs on the center console. Unlike many models in the 6-Series' price and performance range, the Convertible variants still use a soft top, which saves weight even if it offers somewhat less isolation from the elements.
Handling and power are definite strong suits for the 2010 BMW 6-Series, but its plethora of high-tech equipment takes away much of what makes a great driver's car great in the name of refinement and efficiency. Hefty weight and a lack of feel behind the wheel also dim the 6-Series' otherwise bright light.
Coupe and Convertible versions of both the standard V-8-powered 6-Series 650i and the more sport-focused V-10-powered M6 are available. All models offer the same 2+2 seating layout, and the standard car comes with either a manual or sport-shift automatic six-speed transmission. The M6 is available with either a seven-speed sequential manual or a traditional six-speed manual transmission.
The V-8 engine that propels the 650i Coupe and Convertible is rated at 360 horsepower and 360 pound-feet of torque, which is enough to take the car to 60 mph in a manufacturer claimed time of 5.5 seconds for the manual transmission and 5.6 seconds for the auto. The 5.0-liter V-10-powered M6 offers a whopping 500 horsepower of output for blazingly quick times of 4.5 and 4.6 seconds for the sequential-manual equipped Coupe and Convertible, respectively. All models are electronically limited to a maximum speed of 155 mph.
With its 2+2 layout, the 2010 BMW 6-Series might seem to have room for four passengers, but the rear seats are better termed package shelves, as they only offer the suggestion of actual seating space. Front passenger comfort is excellent, however, with well-bolstered and supportive seating offering plenty of room. Interior pockets and storage space aren't abundant, but are adequate for a typical highway jaunt. Cargo space in the trunk is actually fairly good at 13.0 cubic feet, thanks in part to the oddly styled decklid, which doesn't impinge on the available space. The Convertible has less space than the Coupe for obvious reasons, but it's still adequate for overnight trips or golf outings, at 12.4 cubic feet with the top up and 10.6 cubic feet with it down.
Features abound in the 2010 BMW 6-Series and M6, with an available moonroof on Coupe models, and a fully power-actuated multilayer soft top on the Convertibles, plus optional sport seats as part of the new Sports Package, a special sun-reflective interior treatment for the Convertibles, a wide range of interior styles and décor, and of course, electronics like heads-up display, dynamic cruise control, and much more. The new fourth-generation iDrive system adds features and makes the notoriously complex interface a bit easier to handle, though it's still not as intuitive as many might like.
There are also no compromises when it comes to safety in the 2010 6-Series, with a range of standard features, including Active Head Restraints, Active Knee Protection, Active Head Protection (Coupe), Rollover Protection System (Convertible), and a full complement of airbags, electronic stability and traction control, and a state-of-the-art safety cell and crumple zone structure.
- Comfortable two-person cockpit
- Available soft top
- M6 accelerates like a proper sports car
- Rear seats? What rear seats?
- Almost too much technology
- Bulky size and weight
- Awkward rear end