BMW GB has completed its 4 series range with the local launch of the Gran Coupé, a model primarily targeted at the fleet market.

Many UK  fleet operators exclude two-door cars like the rest of the 4 Series (coupe and convertible) rang, but the Gran Coupé neatly side-steps that by offering four side doors within a fastback body, like the Audi A5 Sportback and Mercedes-Benz CLA.

BMW is so confident of the Gran Coupé's drawing power for fleets that it is offering an entry-level 418d diesel version not available in any other 4 Series model.

"We think 60% of the market for the Gran Coupé will be corporate sales - the same as with the 3 series saloon," said medium cars operations manager, Natasha Newman.

"With the coupé, the corporate market is only 40% because of the restrictions placed on two-door cars and with the convertible it is just 35%."

BMW is also expecting the Gran Coupé to appeal to families who want similar practicality to that offered by the 3 Series saloon with a higher level of standard equipment in a more stylish package.

"Overall, the Gran Coupé will make up a quarter of all 4 series sales compared with 45% for the coupé and 30% for the convertible," said Newman.

The UK will be the fourth-largest market for the car, contributing around 28,000 sales during the model's lifetime.

The Gran Coupé is identical to the coupé from nose to A-pillar but from there backwards it has a gentler roof sweep which makes it 23mm taller - creating more rear headroom - and a 35-litre larger boot. It also has five seats compared with the coupé's four, and an electrically operated tailgate.

The UK launch line is based on two diesel and three petrol engines and four trim levels. Two further diesels will be added within weeks when the number of power units available with the xDrive all-wheel-drive system will be expanded from one to four. All models are available with a six-speed manual gearbox or an eight-speed automatic.

Prices start at GBP29,425 for the 420i SE while the low-CO2 champion for company car drivers will be the 418d, with emissions of 121g/km and a BIK taxation rate of 19%.

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