Hot and Practical: BMW 2-Series Active Tourer
Some people scoffed at the idea of a front-wheel drive BMW, other applauded the change of pace. Regardless of opinion, the new BMW 2-Series Active Tourer has officially broken cover and ‘functionality’ looks to be the name of the game. Inside, the Active Tourer offers up an impressive amount of cargo and passenger room for such a small five-door hatchback. The rear luggage compartment is versatile, capable of expanding from 16.5 cubic feet to a spacious 53.3 cubic feet with the rear seats folded flat. The back seat selectively folds in a 40:20:40 split ratio to accommodate endless combinations of passengers and gear.
Standard equipment includes a host of convenience features: hands-free smartphone connectivity, rain-sensing wipers, collision warning, and advance braking functions, but also the latest BMW EfficientDynamics technologies. These include an auto start-stop function, brake energy recuperation, and an air curtain to divert the air stream along the front wheels.
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But despite it’s everyday-applicability, the BMW Active Tourer’s front-wheel drive setup shouldn’t be a limiting factor to performance. The new chassis features a single-joint spring strut axle up front with a multi-link setup in the rear. And though it’s performing double duty, BMW affirms that the front-axle won’t be subject to dreaded torque steer.
The latest addition to the 2-Series will launch with one of three fuel-efficient and turbocharged powerplants. The BMW 218i receives a 1.5-liter three-cylinder that generates 136-horsepower, the top-of-the-range 225i fits a 2.0-liter four-cylinder making 228hp, and a 2.0-liter four-cylinder diesel powers the 218d around to the tune of 148hp. Power is sent to the ground via a six-speed manual gearbox, with an eight-speed Steptronic unit standard on the 225i and optional for the 218d.
The 2-Series Active Tourer ships to German dealerships on September 27 of this year, starting at around $36,700. The US launch is pegged for late 2015 as a 2016 model for these shores.
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