228i sDrive Gran Coupe spins only the fronts
Undercuts Merc CLA by $2,200
A new near-entry-level model is sneaking into the BMW‘s US lineup, offering a version of the Gran Coupe that will be slightly more affordable. Of course, in order to slash $2,000 off the price it will have a feature that isn’t exactly a first for the brand but is still a bit of a shock. Front-wheel drive.
News of the new 2021 BMW 2-Series Gran Coupe trim level comes from CarsDirect, who spotted it on a BMW order guide. That will make entrance into the 2021 2 Series lineup $2,000 cheaper than last year with the 228i sDrive Gran Coupe starting from US $36,695. The previous AWD 228i xDrive Gran Coupe is $38,695.
It makes that trim the cheapest car in the BMW lineup in the country, though the also front-drive base X1 undercuts it by $300, though the GC, the report points out, gets features like navigation, power-fold mirrors, and LED headlights that would add thousands to the X1.
Power will come from the same engine as offered in the xDrive 228i, a 228 hp 2.0L turbo-four with 258 lb-ft, and an eight-speed automatic sending power to the front wheels. Fuel economy improves 1 mpg to 28.
Many shoppers don’t want or need all-wheel drive, and this offering takes that feature away and offers them a slightly more appealing lease payment. It also slots in at $2,200 less than the base Mercedes-Benz CLA, its closest competitor. Don’t expect the M235i version to get the same FWD treatment as we can’t imagine BMW putting even the M lite badge on a front-driver just yet. We’ve reached out to BMW Canada to find out if the car is planned (the X1 is AWD-only here as well), but don’t expect an immediate answer over the holidays.