2014 BMW M6 Gran Coupe – First Drive

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Some will argue there’s no logical necessity for the new BMW M6 Gran Coupe. The M5 has you covered if you need the ultimate four-door M. Fancy something sportier? Well, what about the M6 Coupe and Convertible? All share the same engine and most of the same chassis parts, and yet the M6 Gran Coupe is really a welcome addition that might can make the others redundant.

There are no surprises inside the make-up of your M6 Gran Coupe. It can be, to all intents and purposes, a stretched M6 Coupe. That means an additional 4.4 of metal between the wheels, enough to slot inside an extra door on both sides, making access to the rear seats easier, and giving those occupants lots more room to stretch outpossible buyers might not be swayed by such practicalities. They’re more likely to be attracted by the styling – and who can blame them? The regular 6 Series Gran Coupe is an elegant machine, and that’s not lost in translation to M6 guise. However it has a dose of menace that’s unmistakably from the school of M car design.

Up front you will find larger air intakes plus a bespoke kidney grille, complemented by high-end Adaptive LED lights with a unique signature. About the fenders, behind the arch-filling 20 rims, are characteristic gills, while the rear view is dominated by a quad-pipe layout. They attract the onlooker to the carbon fiber diffuser, which can be matched towards the carbon roof. It appears damned good regardless, though no doubt, there seemed to be talk about weight saving as well as a lower center of gravity.

The same can be stated for the cockpit. All Gran Coupes include an opulent cabin, although the M-specific accessories raise the bar. Allowing three modes for individual sub-systems like the power steering, throttle map, stability control, damping and transmission calibration endows the Gran Coupe with the impressive breadth of ability, although some won’t like the bewildering selection of driver customization options.

2014 BMW M6 gran coupe gauge cluster

2014 BMW M6 gran coupe glove box

2014 BMW M6 gran coupe center console

Thankfully, like the M5 and M6, a favorite shortcut can be grouped together under one of two pre-set programs, which can be selected via buttons on the slim-rimmed steering wheel. Amusingly, if your selection includes “DSC off” the automobile asks for confirmation before relinquishing control. “Are you really sure you want to do that? ”

Leave everything in Comfort mode and the M6 glides demurely. Otherwise the seven-speed M DCT dual-clutch transmission gives smooth changes and is keen to be in high gears inside a bid to save lots of fuel, although the exhaust barks at start-up.

The suspension, despite being forced to disguise low-profile tires, does a very good job of absorbing whatever the road surface can throw at it, leaving the car comfortable and relaxing to drive. It’s still comfy enough for long distance cruising, though admittedly, it’s firmer than lesser Gran Coupe models.

Proceed to the other extreme, with all settings in Sport Plus, as well as the M6 comes alive. Response from the engine changes from rapid to searing, as well as the V8 twin-turbo makes a unique turbine-like roar as it hurtles towards the redline. That’s when you notice the M-specific shift lights and, if you’ve taken control, you’ll flick the correct-hand paddle to prompt the following ratio to bang into position – and it’s nothing short of ferocious since it does so.a good corner as well as the brakes do a great job of hauling on the Gran Coupe from speed; the throttle is blipped automatically on each downshift. Admittedly, our test car was fitted with the optional carbon-ceramic stoppers, which aren’t cheap. The M6 is supremely stable, the longer wheelbase aiding composure.

Fortunately, its length doesn’t compromise the fun to be had. And despite an arsenal of cutting-edge safety driver and electronics aids, the M6 Gran Coupe is very engaging to operate a vehicle hard. It lets you think you’re partially responsible for the insane cornering speeds, even though it may be doing everything for you personally.

The regular Gran Coupe is among our favorite GTs, with its athletic body, intimate cabin and accessible performance. The M6 version adds brutal performance to that mix, creating a four-door musclecar with luxurious appointments for rear passengers, opulence up front in addition to the engine and chassis of a racecar. If you’re not concerned about weight and are looking for a luxury sport car, the new M6 Gran Coupe has to be on the shopping list.If you’ve had the opportunity to step behind the scenes at HaSport, found in the heart of Phoenix, Arizona, there are a few things that probably jumped right out at you, @@@@@ . First and foremost, the wall-to-wall parts, engines, and also the remains of countless Honda carcasses strewn about. You may have also noticed several dusty race cars from various generations; some complete, some not so complete, and others barely flirting with the potential of being next on the operating table. While Brian Gillespie, HaSport’s chief development and marketing guru, would prefer to focus on race cars morning, noon, and night, the engine mount business comes first. Reaching a fever pitch over the past couple of years, Gillespie has already established little time to dedicate to his stable of track cars. Even HaSport felt the crunch of a faltering economy that put a stranglehold around the automotive aftermarket, as successful as the company has been within the last 14 years. Though it could tough it all out, the pressure was enough to set this K-swapped track car on the back burner…until now.

Before the Prelude was even a thought, the engine the thing is pictured, an ERL-built K24A4, sat nicely between the fenders of a ’01 Civic sedan. Plans to take on the four-door halted rather quickly as Gillespie had his doubts about the MacPherson strut suspension serving as a great basis for a formidable track weapon. Gillespie adds, “I spoke with Bernardo Martinez, and he suggested a mid-’90s Prelude. One of many reasons being that its large wheel arches will allow for wider, more aggressive wheels and tires without resorting to flared arches. We eventually found an ex-World Challenge car owned by SCCA Club Racer Dwight Kelly. The car originally belonged to Taz Harvey, and in 1996, he was narrowly defeated in the World Challenge T2 Driver’s Championship by RealTime Racing’s Prelude. Only two points separated them.”

Getting the tips for an excellent chassis for the build that lay ahead, Gillespie and crew transported the auto back to HaSport where they did anything they always use expert precision; they swapped the engine. The K24 was nestled comfortably in the new home for which seemed like only moments before Full-Race put together a custom turbo kit to abuse the ERL-built mill. Based on a Garrett GT3076R, Full-Race took care of all the cooling and piping duties and supplied one of its race-proven exhaust manifolds. Next, they paid a visit to Joe Sawyer of Locash Racing so he could work his tuning magic, the effect of which was an easy graph topping out at 500 hp. Doing its best to placed the power to the ground is an RSX Type S transmission built with a Clutch Masters Stage IV clutch and Mugen 1.5 way differential.

Hasport 1995 honda prelude air redirection panels

Hasport 1995 honda prelude andy hope

Hasport 1995 honda prelude hondata church engine bay

With the project moving along so well, everyone was caught off guard since the momentum was slapped in the actual face. Gillespie adds, “It was shipped to Bernardo [Martinez] for more fab. It was in 2009, and due to the souring economy, the project was put on the back burner.” Though there have been short flashes of progress along the way, Gillespie admits it was slow. “The stock brake system was changed to Wilwood’s top-mount pedal assemblies as well as a dual master cylinder setup for better brake bias control. The rollcage was modified and so the driver seat could be moved back to better fit the brake pedal changes. The fuel system was upgraded for the big-horsepower turbo motor with a total of four fuel pumps feeding the engine. Complete replumbing of brake lines, boost control, and all wiring. That’s regarding it during that time.”

In The Year 2011, as the economy finally started to turn around, at the very least in the performance aftermarket world, HaSport’s mount kits were flying off the shelves at breakneck speeds, and the project was resurrected. An influx of new business meant new machines being added to the HaSport compound, including a water jet, TIG and MIG welders, and sheetmetal-bending capabilities. Under the consultation and watchful eye of renowned aerodynamicist John McNulty, the Prelude was treated to a number of aero enhancements solely focused on functionality and efficiency. A custom-built wing, radiator shrouding, side skirts, and rear diffuser were incorporated. Andy Hope of Circuit Monsters fame hand-laid his patented vinyl wrapped graphics scheme just days before a set of Rays Gram Lights 57DR wheels from Mackin Industries arrived. To match the performance of the fully built Prelude, a collection of Toyo Proxes RS1 competition slicks were mounted and stenciled.

According to Gillespie, the automobile is ready to do battle. He states, “It’s ready for the track now, though the big challenge will likely be putting all 500 hp to the ground-additional tuning will be handled by Church Automotive Testing. The car’s computer is Hondata’s K-Pro, and we’ll be utilizing their gear-dependent boost controller along with Hondata’s new traction control system.” Gillespie is positive about the car’s ability, once all of the intricacies are sorted out on track. Furnished with 500 hp, virgin slicks, and between the three of those Gillespie and Bernardo, and Hope), a pool of knowledge and experience that runs deeper than most, Gillespie closes comfortably with this particular, “Rest assured, track records will fall.”

Hasport 1995 honda prelude toyo proxes RS1

Hasport 1995 honda prelude sparco seats

Hasport 1995 honda prelude fuel tank

Owner Specs

Daily Grind

HaSport

Favorite Sites

HaSport.com and hondatuningmagazine.com

Screen Name

HaSport

Building Hondas

Long, looong time

Dream Car

Any car which can be swapped

Inspiration for This Build

The need for speed!

Future Builds

How much time are you experiencing?

Hasport 1995 honda prelude MOMO controls

Hasport 1995 honda prelude motion suspension remote damper

Hasport 1995 honda prelude fluid containers

Bolts & Washers

Propulsion

K24A4

HaSport mounts

ERL Performance machine work

CP Pistons 9.: 1

Brian Crower rods

Brian Crower cams

Brian Crower valves

Brian Crower valvesprings

Garrett GT3076R

Full-Race exhaust manifold

Full-Race intercooler

Full-Race piping

Full-Race 3-inch exhaust

Walbro internal fuel pump x2

Bosch external fuel pump x2

RC 1,000 injectors

Bosch fuel filter

AEM fuel pressure regulator

CSF radiator, DC/EG/EK version

RSX Type S transmission

Clutch Masters Stage IV

Clutch Masters flywheel

Mugen 1.5 way diff

Power

500 hp

Suspension

Moton coilovers

Moton shocks

HaSport custom bushings

HaSport custom alignment

HaSport custom front subframe

HaSport custom front radius rods

Wheels & Tires

Rays Gram Lights 57DR, 18×8.5 38

Toyo Proxes RS1, 245/640-18 (full slick)

Resistance

Wilwood calipers

Fastbrakes discs

Fastbrakes brackets

Carbonetic pads

Custom brake lines

Wilwood dual master cylinder

Exterior

Custom front bumper

HaSport splitter

HaSport diffuser

HaSport side skirts

HaSport rear wing

Circuit Monsters vinyl wrap

Interior

Interior paint by Bernardo Martinez

Sparco seats

MOMO controls

HaSport shift knob

Wilwood pedal assembly

Electronics

Hondata K-Pro

Hondata boost controller

Hondata traction control

Hondata datalogger

AIM datalogger

AIM gauges

Props

ERL Performance, Brian Crower, CP Pistons, Full-Race, Fastbrakes, CSF Radiator, Church Automotive Testing, Locash Racing, Mackin Industries, Toyo Tires, Nacho Speed Garage

Hasport 1995 honda prelude rear wrap

Hasport 1995 honda prelude front vinyl wrap

Hasport 1995 honda prelude rays gramlights 570R

In Search Of Function

Gillespie and crew are looking for absolute performance using this build, so when mentioned, aerodynamicist John McNulty played a major role in the search for the right amount of downforce. The wing, a McNulty original design, mounts right to brackets that transfer downforce to the chassis of the Prelude. The front splitter mounts right to the chassis as well, utilizing adjustable brackets so that its height may be fine-tuned anytime. The rear diffuser is also installed on adjustable brackets and will eventually be integrated into a complete flat bottom piece. The low-hanging side skirts were designed to take advantage of the downforce produced by the spiraling vortices coming off the wheels. This car wasn’t just thrown together, as you’ve probably figured out by now. Every part serves a definitive purpose.