BMW makes cars that are based around efficiency rather than beauty and the 2 Series is a perfect example of that: It's more bold and aggressive, rather than cute and funky.
It's business as usual with the traditional BMW kidney grille and slim headlamps, as well as the rising crease line from the bonnet to the rear of the car, accentuating the 2's sporty credentials.
The cabin has a real premium theme to it, which is exactly what you'd expect for a BMW. It's not quite in the same league as an Audi, but it's still very luxurious. There's plenty of space for the driver and front seat passenger and while the back is better suited for smaller occupants, it's not as compact as an Audi TT or a Mini. Getting in and out of the back is a little tricky though.
The boot is a decent size: 280 litres with the roof folded away, 335 with the roof up. That's more supermini standard and it's quite an unusual shape, so you'll probably find yourself using the back seats for additional luggage.
For those who don't keep up to speed with the BMW line-up, the 2 Series was introduced in 2014 as a direct replacement for the 1 Series coupe and convertible. Underneath, it remains a 1 Series but it's just been stretched to give it a longer, grander, sleeker look. The 1 Series itself remains as a hatchback, but the 2 Series is available as a coupe and convertible, and there's also an MPV version now.
There are four engines to choose from in both petrol and diesel guise, but the best all-rounder is the 220d as it offers a good blend of economy and performance. Drive it carefully and you'll get over 60mpg. If performance is more your thing, then the M235 is the best bet thanks to its 3 litre straight six that will do 0-60 in just five seconds.
The simple fact is BMW makes great cars and the 2 Series is no exception. The steering is well weighted and gives the driver confidence through the bends, and the extra body strengthening means there's little flex. The ride is also firm but in no way unbearable. Bottom line: This is a car you can use day-to-day.