2013 BMW 650i Gran Coupe Long-Term Update 4
A Long Car Made for Long Road Trips
With Angus MacKenzie's recent move to a new long-termer and the departure of my Subaru BRZ, I was given custody of our 650i Gran Coupe for the duration of its stay. On previous back-to-back Los Angeles to Las Vegas and L.A. to Sedona, Arizona, trips, the 650i proved itself as a great grand-touring car. With effortless speed, good freeway comfort, and enough amenities to send Thoreau into spastic fits were he still alive, the GC is a talented mile-eater.
It's proved capable on the daily commute, too, but there's one thing I just can't quite get used to: The car is long. Very long. At nearly 16.5 feet long, the Gran Coupe is still nearly a foot shorter than such long-wheelbase luxury cars as the Jaguar XJL and BMW's own 760iL, but more than 16 feet is still no joke. It's clear that today's parking lots aren't always designed for such cars, so the BMW demands a little extra caution when negotiating the local Costco lot. Fortunately, this car is equipped with the radar parking system and overhead view backup camera, which really makes a difference and has kept the GC from getting a single parking lot ding.
In other news, the BMW just went in for its first service at 15,000 miles. Along with the routine oil/filter change and inspection (free of charge under BMW's initial no-cost service program), I also asked about a little irritation I was experiencing. BMW's auto start/stop system engages every time the car is turned on, even if it was previously turned off. While I'm all for increased fuel efficiency and lower emissions, the sudden shudder of the car restarting -- along with the fact that the split second it takes to refire is particularly irksome when trying to quickly merge into traffic from a stop -- often makes the system a thorn in my side. 'No problem," my service advisor said. "We can deactivate it." He did, so now when I turn it off, it stays off next time I start the car.
I also asked about our car's oil consumption. In just over 15K miles, the car used five quarts of fairly expensive Castrol synthetic. Similar experiences found on online BMW forums led Angus to determine this usage was normal. According to my service advisor, it is. According to his explanation, oil is lost through the car's twin turbochargers. Fair enough, as long as it's normal.
|Service life||12 mo/16,023 mi|
|Average fuel economy||17.3 mpg|
|CO2 emissions||1.12 lb/mi|
|EPA City/Hwy/Comb Fuel Econ||17/25/19 mpg|
|Energy consumption||195 kW-hr/100mi|
|Maintenance cost||$0 (oil change, inspection)|