What's the news?
BMW's pair of mini-MPVs - the 2 Series Active Tourer and the Gran Tourer - are having a midlife model refresh. Here's the full lowdown on what's happening to the Twos.
In one of those instances where you're looking at someone's face and you're not sure if they've had Botox or not - and you're too afraid to ask to confirm - you'll look at the 2 Active Tourer and Gran Tourer models for 2018 for a long time, aware something has changed but you're not confident as to precisely what. So allow us to explain. The only standard-to-all changes amount to bigger kidney grilles and a redesigned lower front airdam, while M Sport models get their own, new design for the front apron and rear lower bumper. If you option up Adaptive LED headlights and/or LED front fog lamps, then they have a new design, but that's about it. And round the back, the sole alteration is that four-cylinder models now have twin, spaced 90mm-diameter exhausts.
Beyond that, there are six new designs of alloy wheel - four at 17 inches, a set of 18s and some 19-inch whoppers - while two fresh colours for the body will be on sale. These are Sunset Orange, familiar from the 2 Series, and the rather unusual-sounding Jucaro Beige. Which looks grey to our eyes, but we digress...
Within, the 2 Series Active Tourer/Gran Tourer models are benefitting from the same updates we've seen pretty much across the entire BMW board in recent months. Technology filtering down from the 5 Series and 7 Series, in essence. So there's enhanced BMW Connected Drive displayed on the latest iDrive 6 display screen in the dash (either 6.5- or 8.8 inches, depending on trim grade), a black-panel instrument cluster and a new electronic gear selector for models with the twin-clutch gearbox. Buyers will also have improved seat coverings to sit on, said to improve comfort, and they can be finished in three new upholsteries. Semi-autonomous software such as Active Cruise Control, Traffic Jam Assistant and the Driving Assistant Plus are all part of the 2 Active Tourer/Gran Tourer offering, as well.
Not much has changed here. BMW cites 'extensive efficiency-enhancing modifications to the crankshaft, heat management, valve train and turbocharging' to make the TwinPower Turbo units that little bit better for fuel and emissions. Further, the German company says that, from March 2018, all its diesel engines will employ exhaust gas treatment technology including a diesel particulate filter, NOx absorber catalyst and Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system, which uses AdBlue to reduce nitrogen oxides in the car's exhaust gases. Rather interestingly, it also says all its four-cylinder diesels are twin-turbocharged, as well as being twin-scroll (TwinPower).
As with the revised MINI range, with which it shares so much, the 2 Series Active Tourer and Gran Tourer cars will now be available with a seven-speed dual-clutch Steptronic automatic transmission, alongside the six-speed manual and eight-speed torque converter Steptronic auto. The 220i is the only model fitted with the seven-speed twin-clutch unit as standard, while the 225i xDrive and 220d come with the eight-speed auto. Finally, the plug-in hybrid Active Tourer, the 225xe, continues in the facelifted line-up.
BMW Ireland hasn't announced prices for the facelifted 2 Series Active Tourer and Gran Tourer models, but we'd expect a carry-over from pre-facelift money - so somewhere in the region of €34,620 for the Active Tourer and €38,230 for the Gran Tourer should be about right before any deals.