The compact two-door spotted here is a prototype for the upcoming BMW 2 Series coupe. The 2 Series will be offered as both a coupe and a convertible; it’s based on the existing BMW 1 Series hatchback already on sale in Europe.
The name change is designed to give BMW more unique models to sell and also allow for raising prices on two-door cars. The BMW 2 Series will cost more than a 1 Series, just as the new 4 Series coupe/convertible will be costlier than the 3 Series sedan.
We previously spotted a BMW 2 Series convertible testing in Germany. Like that car, this 2 Series coupe has the familiar kidney-grille nose, a short hood with swept-back headlights, a stubby trunklid, and an abrupt curving roof.
It’s still a mystery as to what engines will power the BMW 2 Series. Here in the U.S., we can expect a 228i model with BMW’s 2.0-liter turbo-four engine and a 235i with the turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six. A choice between six-speed manual and eight-speed automatic transmissions is a near certainty.
We’ll probably see the BMW 2 Series at a major auto show this year; it could go on sale by the end of 2013 or early in 2014.