2014 BMW 4 Series Review
The all-new BMW 4 Series Coupe signifies the start of a new era for BMW coupes. As the latest generation of BMW's sporty midsize coupe, the new 4 Series Coupe captures the essence of dynamics and aesthetic appeal. The new coupe is offered as both a 428i, featuring BMW's Turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder and as a 435i with the Twin Power Turbo 3.0-liter inline six. Both are available with a standard eight-speed sport automatic or six-speed manual transmission and a choice of rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.
The proportions of the 4 Series Coupe differ significantly from those of the outgoing BMW 3 Series Coupe. One inch longer, a 2-inch longer wheelbase and a roofline that's 0.6 inches lower, the stretched coupe's profile is enhanced. The new dimensions, combined with the coupe's characteristically short overhangs, long hood and set-back passenger compartment produce a balanced side view.
The new coupe's appearance is emphasized by its 1.7-inch width increase. Notably, the rear wheel arches are the car's broadest point, providing a more aggressive stance. A 1.8-inch wider front track and full 3.1 inches of extra width at the rear axle assure improvements in handling characteristics. The coupe's lower suspension brings the center of gravity below 20 inches, the lowest of any car in the current BMW lineup.
Characteristic BMW design features, such as the double-kidney grille, four round headlights and a large air intake in the front apron display family ties to the 3 Series. Located just behind the front wheels are Air Breathers designed to reduce drag around the wheel arches.
High-class material combinations, exclusive colors and opportunities for personalization define the premium feel inside the new BMW 4 Series Coupe. Controls are arranged ergonomically around the driver providing ready access. Automatic seat belt valets, a Sport steering wheel, circular instruments and flat-screen iDrive monitor give a sense of functional elegance. The iDrive Controller is located for easy reach on the center console.
In back, contoured seats have recessed head restraints and molded side supports, making the rear bench look like separate seats. The rear seatback folds down in 40:20:40 segments, creating a large through-loading gap, which can accommodate several pairs of skis or snowboards while still allowing space for four people. With the optional Smart Opener a short movement of the foot under the center of the rear bumper is all it takes to raise the trunk lid. As we expected, BMW engineers have placed special emphasis on steering accuracy, precision, linear control response, and agility to make the new 4 Series Coupe another Ultimate Driving Machine. Sophisticated chassis technology, near-perfect 50:50 weight distribution, fine-tuning in the wind tunnel, and lightweight construction all contribute to meet that goal.
A combination of driver assistance systems are available. Among the highlights are a new generation of BMW Navigation System, which offers extra capability, sharper graphics and 3D elements for the map display, the full-color BMW Head-Up Display; Driving Assistant Plus, which warns the driver of a potential collision with a pedestrian, the intelligent; glare-free LED High Beam Assistant and the latest iteration of BMW Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go. Efficient interface technology enables the integration of smartphones and numerous Bluetooth office functions. The latter also offers the driver the option of a dictation function with full speech recognition. Arriving in showrooms in late summer, the 2014 BMW 428i and 435i Coupe start at $41,425 and $46,925, respectively.
Manufacturer Photo: The BMW 4 Series Coupe is visibly larger in width and wheelbase than the outgoing BMW 3 Series Coupe, and its stretched silhouette sits considerably lower to the road. This, together with its BMW-typical short overhangs, long hood and set-back passenger compartment with flowing roofline, give the BMW 4 Series Coupe a visual balance. New elements of the BMW 4 Series Coupe are the Air Breathers, which are positioned rearwards of the front wheel arches to reduce drag. The Coupe's muscular wheel arches and wide track give an aggressive stance, with its prominent horizontal lines.
Copyright, Motor Matters, 2013