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First drive: BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer 220d xDrive M Sport

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So who’s doing the school run? If you own BMW’s new 2 Series Gran Tourer, you can bet it’ll be you writes Geraldine Herbert

What is it? The car market may be awash with new smaller crossovers and compact SUVs but how do big families get around these days? This is BMW’s new family ferry with driving dynamics to merit the badge and large enough to haul a small hockey team.

First impressions of the new BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer? Aimed at rivals such, as Ford’s S-Max, the Peugeot 5008 and Citroen’s C4 Grand Picasso essentially the 2 Series Gran Tourer is an extended version of BMW’s five seat Active Tourer; while the Active Tourer was designed to appeal to young families who wanted a little more space the Gran Tourer is  all about those crucial seven seats.

At 214mm longer and 53mm higher than the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer compared to other MPVs the Gran Tourer is longer than Ford’s Grande C-Max but shorter than the Citroen’s C4 Grand Picasso.

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What about the interior?  The cosy driver’s seat of the Gran Tourer is lower than that most MPVs, and while this isn’t necessarily a bad thing and improves driving dynamics, it does mean the pillars can be tricky to see past. The dashboard is laid out in a straightforward, no-nonsense way, but still manages to be stylish.

On the practical side, there is decent space for three kids in the standard arrangement, each with individual isofix mountings and the optional third row can also accommodate two child seats. There is also a huge amount of cubby holes and storage areas, where children’s toys and books can be stowed easily, and a host of family features, including folding tables at the rear of the front seats

And on the road?.According to BMW, driving dynamics are a key consideration for buyers, even within this more practical end of the market. With this in mind, the Gran Tourer certainly doesn’t disappoint. While it is not quite as sharp as the five- seater and the extra weight is apparent, it negotiates twists and bends with reassuring ease, and while we wouldn’t pit the Gran Tourer against a 3 series, this hauler has an impressively stiff ride with adept steering and shares the key BMW driving dynamics from across the range

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How much? Prices for the Gran Tourer start at €36,750, which is almost €4,000 more than for the Active Tourer. The range topping 220d xDrive M Sport is €51,660.

How safe? The Gran Tourer has not yet been tested by the EuroNCAP but there is no reason to believe it wont secure the same five star rating the smaller Active Tourer achieved. There is a huge array of safety features as standard including a large number of airbags are featured and electronic stability and traction control systems.

What about my options? The standard specification includes Intelligent Emergency Call, Bluetooth, Collision Warning with City Braking Function and BMW’s iDrive infotainment system. In addition to the standard SE version, the new BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer is available in Sport, Luxury and M Sport.

3 words to describe the BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer?  Practical; Spacious; Dynamic

 

For more information check out BMW.ie ,the BMW Ireland Facebook page or follow BMW Ireland on twitter

 

Geraldine Herbert

5th May, 2015

Author: Geraldine Herbert

Contributing Editor and Motoring Columnist for the Sunday Independent and editor of wheelsforwomen. Geraldine is also a regular contributor to Good Housekeeping (UK) and to RTÉ Radio One, Newstalk, TodayFM and BBC Radio. You can follow Geraldine on Twitter at @GerHerbert1

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