2015 Geneva Motor Show LIVE: BMW 2 Series Gran Tourer image

Following the recent introduction of the large compact minivan 2 Series Gran Tourer, BMW has officially premiered the model in front of the audience attending the 2015 edition of the Geneva motor show in Switzerland.

The German automaker, currently the largest luxury carmaker in the world, is trying to fend off the offensive of its two largest rivals – Audi and Mercedes-Benz – by entering previously untapped vehicle segments. It has now opted to extend the appeal of the 2 Series Active Tourer by using the “world’s first premium compact model to offer up to seven seats,” called the 2 Series Gran Tourer. As it can be seen, the model is a stretched version of the former – with very familiar styling and elongated rear doors, a tweaked back portion and a higher roofline. The model, which is the second created by the BMW brand to not feature the traditional rear wheel drive arrangement, has enough room to accommodate up to seven people. The cabin has similar features, styling and design with the 2 Series Active Tourer, save for the optional third row bench that can be folded flat into the floor. If you don’t use the two seats there’s more cargo room – up to 1,905 liters (67.2 cubic feet).

The German powerhouse has extended its ample engine line-up towards its latest range addition – five different engines will initially be available, with more to come later on. The lineup starts with the 218i, equipped with the new 1.5-liter TwinTurbo Power three-cylinder that delivers 136 PS (100 kW) and 220 Nm (162 lb-ft) of torque (0-100 km/h in 9.5 seconds and top speed of 205 km/h – 127 mph). Next up is the 220i that churns out 192 PS (141 kW) and 280 Nm (207 lb-ft) of torque from the 2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo four-cylinder – good enough for a 100 km/h jump in 7.6 seconds and a maximum speed of 223 km/h (138 mph). The MPV has three diesel options: 216d (1.5-liter TwinPower Turbo three-cylinder) with 116 PS (85 kW) and 270 Nm (199 lb-ft) of torque; 218d (2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo four-cylinder) with 150 PS (110 kW) and 330 Nm (243 lb-ft) of torque and the all-wheel drive ready 220d xDrive (the same 2.0 liter) with 190 PS (140 kW) and 400 Nm (295 lb-ft) of torque. The xDrive is connected to the well-known 8-speed automatic and can do 100 km/h in 7.6 seconds on its way to a top speed of 218 km/h (135 mph).