Test Drive: 2018 BMW 640i xDrive GT
BMW has finally mastered the art of making a car that nobody wants — a large fastback hatchback sedan. And everyone who drives it will change their minds.
The company's first versions, based on 3-series and 5-series sedans, looked ungainly but drove well. But now, with the all-new 2018 640i xDrive GT, BMW has done everything right. It not only looks surprisingly good, but offers a tremendous amout of cargo spece and drives like a sports car.
Consider the 640i xDrive GT an attractive alternative to station wagons and SUVs for families that want a more style and fun, but still need to haul around a lot of stuff from time to time.
One thing BMW did right this time is make the car both longer and lower than its predecessors. BMW also reduce the scale of rear end, which had been too large before. The result is a sleek looking vehicle that, at first glance, looks smaller than it actually is because the proportions make sense.
But the 640i xDrive GT is, in fact, a very large vehicle, which is immediately apparent once you get inside. There is a tremendous amount of interior room. That includes a lot of cargo space behind the rear seat, and much, much more when it is folded down.
Another thing BMW did right is keep its trusty turbocharged inline six cylinder engine. It's amazing that just about the only other straight six on the market these days are diesels. With 335 horsepower and 332 foot pounds of torque on tap, engine in the 640i xDrive GT felt as strong as V8, but ran much smoother. The eight-speed automatic transmission was perfectly tuned to deliver the power to all four wheels through the company's excellent xDrive all-wheel-drive system.
And because it's a BMW, the interior is well designed and outfitted with the highest quality materials, including the finest leather, soft plastic and tasteful wood trim pieces. The front bucket seats were comfortable enough for the longest trips, with the excellent stereo system making them a joy, not a chore.
Because even small, practical hatchbacks have never sold well in America, sales of the 640i xDrive GT may be limited. But anyone looking for a stylish, room, fast and comfortable luxury sedan or SUV would be wise to check it out.
2018 BMW 640i xDrive GT
Base price: $70,695
Price as tested: $84,010
Style: Midsize hatchback sedan
Engine: Turbocharged 3.0-liter inline 6 (335 hp, 332 lbs-ft)
Transmission: 8-speed automatic
EPA fuel economy: 20/28
Length: 193 inches
Weight: 4,255 pounds
Final assembly: Dongolfing, Germany