Birmingham is regarded as the second capital of England and it is certainly a very different city to Birmingham. When I first started to visit the city in the 1990s, it was not very impressive at all. But then the Bullring was redeveloped into a flagship city centre shopping centre which was in envy of Europe. And the city has improved ever since.
The city is currently redeveloping its main train station, New Street, into something as amazing as the Bullring. As well as an very handy local airport (for me), the city has the National Exhibition Centre, which is another great resource to have for major exhibitions.
The city does not compare well to London but it is certainly a useful city to have close to Coventry.