BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer (2015-2021) Review

Seven seats, a pleasant drive and a plush feel: that's the BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer's appeal

Strengths & weaknesses

  • Flexible layout with seven seats
  • Well equipped
  • More engaging to drive than rivals
  • Tiny boot space when all seats are used
  • Bumpier ride than other people carriers
  • Expensive
BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer prices from £13,000.
Finance from £228.21 / month.

Cost, comfort and luggage capacity: most people carriers are bought and sold on practicality, but BMW’s first seven-seat car in this category now promises a touch of luxury and driving excitement - albeit at a price.

At roughly the same size as a Kia CarensFord Grand C-Max and Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer, it’s part of a group of people carriers that offer very little luggage space when all seven seats are in use. With both back row seats in place in the BMW, there’s just 145 litres of boot space: less than you would get in a Fiat 500.

You're better off with a Ford Galaxy or Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer if more luggage space is needed when you have a full complement of passengers.

The BMW makes more sense if you can cope without one of the rear seats, which fold into the floor individually. Fold both down, and you’ll have 560 litres - about the same as a large family hatchback, and more than enough for most families.

You can turn the car into a temporary van by lowering the middle row of seats too, offering 1,820 litres - more than the Carens, Grand C4 Spacetourer and Grand C-Max. If that’s not enough, the front passenger seat backrest folds forward, so you can fit objects that stretch the 2.6m from the boot almost to the windscreen. Underneath the boot floor of the car, there’s a useful compartment with 100 litres of space, and room for the luggage cover.

There's plenty of storage and stowage bins (including under the front and middle row of seats), cupholders, room for 1.5-litre bottles in every door and 12-volt sockets – even in the third row. The middle row of seats slides back and forth, so you can attempt to provide reasonable legroom for middle and rear passengers but, however you position them, five adults will not be comfortable in the back, as there isn’t enough overall space.

For all its practicality, the BMW hasn’t entirely sacrificed style. The plastics used in the interior are good quality and there are silver panels in even the cheapest model that brighten up the dashboard. Sat-nav is standard across the range, and all but the cheapest model have leather seats as standard.

From behind the wheel, the Gran Tourer feels more like a normal car than its rivals. The van-like shape and size of most people carriers mean that they have a tendency to bounce around over bumpy roads and lean when cornering. But the BMW keeps these movements under control, remaining steady. The steering is accurate and responds quickly as you turn, making the driver feel more involved, and able to manoeuvre more precisely.

The compromise that BMW has made to achieve this, is that the Gran Tourer isn’t quite as smooth as the best of its rivals such as the Citroen Grand C4 Spacetourer and Vauxhall Zafira Tourer: you’ll feel more of the bumps in the road, although it cushions them enough to remain comfortable.

The BMW does feel a cut above the competition overall, however. But it should do; you can expect to pay substantially more for the BMW than an equivalent Ford C-Max and Citroen C4 Grand SpaceTourer, so you pay for what you get.


Key facts

Warranty 3 years / unlimited mileage
Boot size 560 litres (with five seats in place) 1,820 litres (with two seats)
Width 1,800mm
Length 4,556mm
Height 1,608mm
Tax From B (£20 per year) to F (£145 per year)

Best BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer for...

Best for Economy – BMW 216d Gran Tourer

The smallest and lowest-powered diesel is the economy champion, returning 68.9mpg according to official figures (closer to 55mpg in the real world), while low carbon dioxide emissions mean road tax is only £20 a year

Best for Families – BMW 218d Gran Tourer

Still economical (64.2mpg), the 218d feels less sluggish than the 216d, which makes driving more straightforward.

Best for Performance – BMW 220d xDrive Gran Tourer

The addition of four-wheel drive improves on the regular 220d’s 0-62mph acceleration time, reducing it to 7.8 seconds.

One to Avoid – BMW 220i Gran Tourer

A 2.0-litre petrol engine is only going to be the choice of a select few buyers. Its 45.6mpg fuel economy means much higher running costs than the diesel models.

Understanding BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer names

Engine 218d

Most BMWs use a three-number system. The first (in this case, 2) indicates that this is a BMW 2 Series. The second two numbers (18) refer to the engine size. The lower the number, the smaller the engine. Diesel engines add a letter 'd' to the end. Petrol versions have an 'i'.

Trim M Sport

There are four trim levels, starting at SE, rising to Sport, Luxury and M Sport at the top. The higher the trim level, the more equipment you receive.

Gearbox Auto

2 Series Gran Tourer models are fitted with a six-speed manual gearbox, unless they are badged Auto - in which case they have an automatic gearbox.

BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer Engines

218i, 220i, 216d, 218d 220d

The least powerful 218i uses a 1.5-litre engine from the Mini Cooper (BMW owns Mini). It’s designed for economy rather than performance, but its 136hp is enough, as long as you rev it hard when you need strong acceleration.

The 220i, has a larger 2.0-litre engine which, on the other hand, is designed to be relatively sporty, with 192hp, making it feel quick for a people carrier. It does come at a cost of relatively poor fuel economy.

The 216d diesel has a 1.5-litre engine that feels underpowered with 116hp. For a little over £1,000 more, the 150hp engine in the 218d won’t have you groaning in frustration every time you accelerate, and still has a fuel economy figure of more than 60mpg.

With an extra 40hp, the 220d feels almost sporty, with plenty of power without needing to rev the engine. Fuel consumption is still over 62.8mpg but it is £1,500 more than the 218d and not available with the cheapest trim level. This is the only diesel engine available with optional four-wheel drive.

Unfortunately, the economical and somewhat sporty 225xe plug-in hybrid that was available in the smaller five-seat 2 Series Active Tourer was never available in the seven-seat Gran Tourer counterpart.



Fuel economy


Acceleration (0-62mph)

Top speed































220d xdrive






BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer Trims

SE, Sport, Luxury, M Sport 

Standard equipment fitted to the base SE level includes Bluetooth hands-free telephone functionality with audio streaming, AM/FM radio, 'iDrive' media system and 6.5-inch colour screen, emergency call, automatic lights and wipers, two-zone climate control, rear parking sensors, cruise control, front foglamps, a multifunction steering wheel, plus autonomous emergency braking – a very effective new safety technology that can also help reduce insurance premiums.

Sport variants add 17-inch alloy wheels, and sports seats. Luxury trim brings leather upholstery and heated seats up front. Range-topping M Sport models include leather sports seats, leather steering wheel, and a choice of 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels.

There were also numerous options that buyers can choose to enhance their car, including a full-length sunroof, Dynamic Damper Control, a head-up display, lane departure warning, a Wi-Fi hotspot that enables eight devices in the car to access to the internet and a parking assistant that can steer a car into a parking space.

BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer Reliability and warranty

The model is backed by BMW’s standard three-year unlimited mileage warranty, which is fairly standard at the premium end of the market. It’s still too new to know definitively how reliable it is, but BMW hasn’t impressed in recent years. In the 2016 Auto Express Driver Power survey, the company was ranked 21st out of 32 manufacturers for reliability.

Used BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer

The 2 Series Gran Tourer is still relatively new to the market, so there are few genuinely used examples on the market. However, you can find low mileage versions with between £3,000 and £5,000 off: bringing the car into line with the list price of a new Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer or Ford Grand C-Max.

Other Editions

2 Series (2013 – 2021)

A sporty driving experience, smart looks and an upmarket feel make the 2 Series Coupe a compelling alternative to an ordinary hatchback

2 Series Active Tourer (2014 – 2021)

BMW brings a touch of premium motoring to the MPV market, combining luxury, technology and practicality

2 Series Convertible (2014 – 2021)

Attractive looks, good handling and excellent engines mark the 2 Series Convertible out as a fun-to-drive compact four-seat soft-top

2 Series Gran Coupe (2020)

Stylish looks, great onboard tech and a more relaxing ride will appeal to a younger BMW audience, but the price tag remains premium

2 Series (2021)

Striking looks, powerful engines and reasonable luggage space make the 2 Series Coupe a tempting alternative to a hot hatchback