2011 BMW 335i coupe and cabrio

While Mercedes-Benz has been steadily re-integrating its four-seat coupes and cabrios into their corresponding sedan ranges, BMW is reportedly preparing to go the other way. Word from Car Magazine has it that the Bavarian automaker is preparing to launch the next-generation versions of its 1 Series and 3 Series coupes and convertibles as the 2 Series and 4 Series, respectively.

The move would correspond well to the 6 Series, the coupe and convertible that sits between the 5 Series and 7 Series sedans. It's not the first time BMW has considered such a move, having come close to spinning the two-door 3 Series into a 4 Series about a decade ago.

Audi recently completed a similar shift, replacing the A4 convertible with the A5. That model has since spawned a five-door Sportback, in whose company BMW may soon find itself with the 3 Series GT that may likewise be badged as a 4 Series.