Since its debut in 2013, BMW has delivered nearly 400,000 units of the 4 Series to customers all over the world. The biggest single market, racking up approximately a third of all BMW 4 Series sales, is the USA, followed by Great Britain and Germany. About half of all BMW 4 Series models are sold in Europe. The Gran Coupé accounts for some 50 per cent of global BMW 4 Series sales, while the Coupé and Convertible make up around 25 per cent each.
Now in 2017 these three models have been substantially refreshed. Styling cues borrowed from the spectacular BMW Concept 4 Series Coupé in 2012 are clearly visible in the design of the new BMW 4 Series, with the new models including elements such as a large air intake with eye-catching bars and LED headlights and rear lights. But it is not just the styling that has been enhanced, the chassis has been updated too. All three models now have a lower centre of gravity courtesy of a wider track, revised suspension and improved traction control capabilities.
A true sports car profile
The restyled front end of the BMW 4 Series expresses the model range’s dynamic personality to great effect whether it be in SE, Sport or M Sport guise. Crisp contours alternate with expansive surfaces to create a broad contoured appearance. The defining feature at the front of the new BMW 4 Series is an unbroken central air intake with an aperture that increases in size towards the outer edges, adding a more imposing presence and greater sense of width to the entire nose section. On the Sport version, the air intake is almost entirely bordered by an eye-catching, high-gloss black bar that is designed to accentuate the vehicle’s wide, powerful stance.
The BMW 4 Series Coupé, BMW 4 Series Convertible and BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé are now equipped with new twin LED headlights as standard. The headlights are composed of a familiar silhouette: flat-bottomed headlight tubes encircled by daytime running light rings, along with a dynamic cropped look, produced by the characteristic ‘eyebrow’ design. The tubes’ dark-coloured holders give the interior of the headlight assemblies a clear, cool, but technical, look. LED front fog lamps also form part of the standard specification.
All models in the new BMW 4 Series are optionally available with new Icon Adaptive LED headlights, whose highly expressive light arrangement intensifies the front end’s dynamic and technically advanced appearance. The headlight units are cropped off slightly at the top by the LED indicators that form the headlights’ ‘eyebrows’. This has the effect of making the light arrangement seem wider still, which in turn gives the impression of an even more powerful stance on the road.
The rear of the BMW 4 Series has a low, sporty look that follows the lead of the front-end styling, with the bold horizontal lines and elongated design of the rear light clusters helping to make the muscular wheel arches stand out (the widest point of the BMW 4 Series body is at the rear wheels). Meanwhile, the new rear apron has been designed to further accentuate the general impression of power.
The redesigned rear lights give the new BMW 4 Series a fresh and technically sophisticated appearance from the rear. The characteristic L-shaped styling theme for the lights has been retained, but in a reinterpreted form. The LED lights are no longer divided into individual light strips, with a sweeping curve in the outer section of the light assemblies giving them a perfectly homogenous look.
Interior and equipment: highly detailed quality
Moving inside the new BMW 4 Series range and an array of upgraded details add to the cabin’s exclusive, high-quality feel. Examples include the surrounds for the air vents and the control panels in the doors now including electroplated inserts, while the switch for the hardtop roof in the BMW 4 Series Convertible and the integral belt guides for its front seats also have an electroplated finish.
The air conditioning and audio controls in the BMW 4 Series models are now bordered by chrome. The centre console makes an even more elegant impression, thanks to its high-gloss black cover panel, while new double stitching for the dashboard over the instrument panel accentuates the interior’s driver-focused geometry. The sports steering wheel, fitted as standard in the BMW 4 Series, features a new rim wrapped in high-quality leather, with a modified lining that offers the driver an even better grip.
There are also more options to choose from for the interior styling. Night Blue Dakota, Cognac Dakota and Ivory White Dakota leather have been added to the range – three new, very elegant upholstery colours that come with coordinated contrast stitching and piping. New choices for the interior trim, meanwhile, include Aluminium Carbon with Pearl Chrome highlight and Black High-Gloss with Pearl Chrome highlight.
Building on the existing sporty design and appearance of the BMW 4 Series, the Coupé and Convertible models now start with the Sport model, with the M Sport model available for all engines or as standard on the 430i, 430d/430d xDrive, 435d xDrive and 440i models.
The Gran Coupé models start from SE for the 420d/420d xDrive models moving to the Sport model as standard for the 420i/420i xDrive models. As with the Coupé and Convertible models, 430i, 430d/430d xDrive, 435d xDrive and 440i models come as M Sport only.
A wider choice of 18- and 19-inch light-alloy wheels exclusive to the new 4 Series are also now available. A choice of four new designs means there is even greater scope for customising the sporty, elegant exterior of the BMW 4 Series. There are new wheels for each of the SE, Sport and M Sport variants, ensuring that there are even more sporty designs than before.
Exclusive new exterior paint finishes have also been added to the selection; Snapper Rocks Blue, a new shade of turquoise, and Sunset Orange.
Driving dynamics: honed and enhanced
The driving experience in all BMW 4 Series models is rooted in a finely honed blend of sharp sporting performance and superb ride comfort. The BMW 4 Series has a lower centre of gravity than the BMW 3 Series (Coupé: -40 mm, Gran Coupé: -30 mm, Convertible: -20 mm), a wider track at the front (+14 mm) and rear (+22 mm), plus specially configured kinematics, giving it all the ingredients needed for even more agile handling.
BMW’s engineers also greatly enhanced the cars’ dynamic handling capabilities by revising the 4 Series’ suspension, but without compromising on the car’s impressive ride comfort.
The new BMW 4 Series Coupé and new BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé both now come with stiffer suspension, featuring more advanced damping technology and an upgraded steering set-up. These measures have resulted in a tangible improvement in both lateral and longitudinal handling properties, regardless of the load on board. The upshot is reduced roll, more neutral responses when driving at the limit, even greater straight-line stability and the wonderfully precise steering for which BMW is renowned. This applies to the standard suspension, as well as the M Sport suspension and Adaptive suspension.
The new BMW 4 Series Convertible now also offers superior straight-line stability and steering characteristics. The harmonious and extremely agile nature of the outgoing cars’ suspension tuning meant there was no need for more extensive performance-enhancing modifications. High-performance tyres can be optionally fitted on all model variants. These have been specially designed to cater to the needs of drivers with extremely sporty inclinations.
All of the petrol engines and the four-cylinder diesel powerplants offered for the new BMW 4 Series hail from the latest BMW EfficientDynamics family and are equipped with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology.
All new BMW 4 Series models are available with three petrol engines offering the following power ratings: the 420i with 184hp, the 430i with 252hp and the top-of-the-range 440i with 326hp. Combined fuel consumption is 35.8-51.4mpg, while CO2 emissions range from 127g/km to 185g/km.
There is also a choice of three diesel engines: the 420d with 190hp, 430d with 258hp and 435d xDrive with 313hp. Combined fuel consumption ranges from 47.9-70.6mpg with CO2 emissions of 106-155g/km.
Depending on the particular model, the BMW 4 Series Coupé, BMW 4 Series Convertible and BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé can be specified with either a six-speed manual gearbox or eight-speed Steptronic transmission, which is already fitted as standard on the BMW 430d/BMW 430d xDrive, BMW 435d xDrive, BMW 440i Convertible and BMW 440i Gran Coupé.
All petrol models in the new BMW 4 Series – with the exception of the BMW 420i Convertible – plus the BMW 420d Coupé/BMW 420d Gran Coupé and BMW 430d Coupé/BMW 430d Gran Coupé diesel models, can be specified with the optional BMW xDrive all-wheel-drive system instead of classic rear-wheel drive.
Besides the inherent benefits of all-wheel drive – such as optimum transmission of power to the road, supreme handling safety and unbeatable grip in slippery or wintry conditions – BMW xDrive also serves to reduce understeer and oversteer through bends, resulting in more dynamic cornering properties.
Navigation, connectivity and user interface: innovative new displays
BMW has included a number of new features that enhance driver convenience for the navigation, telephone connectivity, display and controls in the BMW 4 Series.
The Professional navigation system, as standard on M Sport trim, includes a new user interface that features six large, tile-style icons over two screen pages. Drivers can arrange the tiles as they please, allowing them to move the menus they use most to the main screen. These control pads provide direct access to the relevant functions, as well as a live display of the linked content. The pad for the entertainment function, for example, shows the song that’s currently playing, with album artwork, while the route the vehicle is currently taking appears on the navigation pad. Once inside the menu, the next operating step is shown as a kind of preview. This innovation helps make the system enjoyable and intuitive to use.
BMW also offers the Digital Cockpit as an option for the BMW 4 Series, which gives the driver the choice of different digital display options for the instrument cluster. The fully digital TFT colour display featuring black panel technology for the cockpit which provides driving-related information in an individually selectable design depending on the driving mode selected.
COMFORT mode brings a more classic display layout, inspired by the traditional analogue instrument cluster, displaying speed, engine revs, a fuel gauge, engine oil temperature, current fuel consumption and the gear selected.
If the super-efficient ECO PRO mode is selected, highlighted by the change in display to blue, the BMW EfficientDynamics technologies become the focus. This means that the driver is notified of their current ‘bonus range’ and brake energy regeneration performance, for example, which aids the adoption of a more economical driving style.
When SPORT mode is engaged, the display changes to red and prioritises performance-related readouts, such as vehicle speed, engine revs or the engine’s current output.
Compatible smartphones can be recharged in the BMW 4 Series without the need for cables, by means of an optional inductive tray. The tray is located in the centre armrest, which now slides for optimum driver and passenger comfort. Additionally, the tray establishes a wireless connection between the smartphone and the car’s external aerial for improved telephone reception – particularly in areas with a weak signal. This option also includes a Wi-Fi hotspot – which provides high-speed in-car internet access for up to 10 mobile devices – plus two USB ports in the centre console. Thanks to their current ratings of 2 amps each, both USB ports are also suitable for charging tablets.
The Apple CarPlay smartphone interface is available as an option, allowing optimum integration of an Apple iPhone in the new BMW 4 Series models.
Reflecting the fact that connectivity between drivers, their cars and the outside world is becoming increasingly advanced, the new BMW 4 Series models feature BMW Connected, a personalised digital mobility assistant. BMW Connected, launched in March 2016, is an all-encompassing digital concept that provides a seamless support tool, covering all aspects of personal mobility. Designed as a digital assistant in the form of an app, BMW Connected combines all the functions necessary for drivers’ day-to-day mobility requirements and can be used in BMW models with ConnectedDrive Services specified. This feature comes as standard on the new BMW 4 Series models with the M Sport package or optionally available with the Professional navigation package
BMW UK expects to sell circa 9,000 BMW 4 Series Coupé models, 4,000 Convertible models and 10,000 BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé in its first full year of sales.
The BMW M4 Coupé and BMW M4 Convertible represent the epitome of a high-performance sports car, offering unrestricted everyday practicality. The six-cylinder engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology is fitted as standard under the bonnet of both BMW M4 model versions, generating a mighty 431hp, propelling them to exceptional performance. At the same time, fuel consumption on the combined cycle for the M4 Coupé is 32.1mpg, while CO2 emissions are measured at 204g/km.
New for 2017 and the sportiest members of the BMW 4 Series family also boast a new look. The BMW M4 Coupé and BMW M4 Convertible now come as standard with LED headlights, the Icon Adaptive LED headlights with hexagonal graphics being optionally available. New 3D LED rear lights also freshen up appearances and add technical appeal. The BMW M3 Saloon also gets this headlight upgrade from March 2017.
Both BMW M4 models feature new-look, illuminated M4 emblems on the front seats, while chrome and electroplated detailing, along with double stitching on the instrument panel, add further highly sophisticated touches in the interior. The list of standard options for the BMW M4 Coupé and BMW M4 Convertible also includes the Professional navigation system with new user interface, ConnectedDrive services and enhanced Bluetooth, complete with inductive charging of mobile phones and a Wi-Fi hotspot.
Since spring 2016, BMW M GmbH has also been offering a Competition Package for both M4 body variants that brings out their dynamic character to an even greater degree. As well as measures to hone their handling properties and a variety of exclusive equipment features, the package also includes a 19hp power hike to 450hp. Combined fuel consumption for the BMW M4 Coupé is 32.1mpg), with CO2 emissions of 204g/km: the BMW M4 Convertible’s fuel consumption, meanwhile, is 31mpg, with CO2 emissions of 213g/km.
With the BMW M4’s extra power comes even sharper dynamics. When the optional seven-speed M Double-Clutch Transmission is specified, the BMW M4 Coupé races from zero to 62mph in just 4.0 seconds (4.2 secs with the manual gearbox), while the BMW M4 Convertible takes 4.3 seconds (4.5 secs) to hit the same mark. The model variants with six-speed manual transmission also shave 0.1 seconds off the time of the same model without the Competition Package.
As part of the model update measures, the Competition Package is now available with the option of new forged 20-inch light-alloy wheels in Star-spoke 666 M style, in black, which complement the high-gloss black exterior components that form part of the Competition Package.
BMW M Performance Accessories are also now optionally available for the first time for the M4 Coupé and Convertible, as well as the M3 Saloon. Customers can now select four individual packages, adding key styling components that bring an even sportier dynamic appearance to both the inside and outside of their vehicle
New Exterior Carbon Package
The Exterior Carbon Package, priced at £3,000 for the M3 Saloon and M4 Coupé, comprises carbon styling components such as front and lower trims, rear diffuser and spoiler, all formed with unique carbon fibre for a true motorsports appearance. The Exterior Carbon Package is also available for the M4 Convertible (£2,500) with the front and lower trims, as well as the rear diffuser.
Customers can also specify the Carbon Mirror package (£400), which adds unique carbon fibre mirrors, while the Black Exterior Package (£500, standard models only) adds black kidney grilles, side bars and exhaust tips.
The interior also gets an upgrade with the Carbon Interior Package (£850), featuring an Alcantara steering wheel with carbon fibre inlays, plus a gear surround and selector that feature the same carbon fibre finish.
The BMW M4 is available to order now with prices from £58,365 OTR.