With the introduction of the all-new 4 Series Coupe, BMW takes a further step toward realigning its model nomenclature, such that even-numbered Series – 4 Series, 6 Series, 8-Series – designations define coupes and convertibles, while their even-numbered counterparts – 3 Series, 5 Series, 7-Series – are corresponding sedans and wagons.
So the 4 Series Coupe is, in effect, a replacement for the current 3 Series Coupe line. It is sufficiently different from the latest 3 Series sedans to be considered a "3 1" – hence 4 – BMW rationalizes.
Of course, the 1 Series and X6 models remain outside that naming rationale, for the time being at least. Perhaps they'll fall into line in their next generation.
It will be offered as both a 428i, powered by BMW’s 240 horsepower TwinPower Turbo 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine, with peak torque of 255 lb-ft, and as a 435i with a 300 horsepower Twin Power Turbo 3.0-litre inline six that generates 300 lb-ft of torque.
Both models will be available with a standard eight-speed automatic or transmission or a six-speed manual transmission and with a choice of rear-wheel drive or optional xDrive all-wheel-drive (AWD).
All four variants will arrive in North America late this summer.
Longer and wider
The 4 Series Coupe echoes the BMW design language introduced on the Concept 4 Series Coupe, which was revealed at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January.
In production form, it is 16 mm longer than the current 3 Series Coupe, with a 50-mm longer wheelbase and 16-mm lower roofline, as well as 43-mm greater width and lowered ride-height.
Visually, it maintains a BMW-typical balance, with short overhangs, long hood, set-back passenger compartment and sloping roofline.
Other characteristic BMW design features, such as the double-kidney grille, four round headlights and a large air intake in the front apron confirm its brand identity. New elements include so-called Air Curtains in the front apron, to reduce turbulence and drag around the front wheels and Air Breathers, positioned rearwards of the front wheel arches to reduce drag.
Its lightweight construction and aerodynamic features also help to maximize efficiency, as do Auto Start-Stop and on-demand operation of ancillary units.
Individual equipment lines
Inside, all the controls central to driving are arranged ergonomically around the driver. Automatic seat belt valets, a sport steering wheel, circular instruments in black-panel look and a free-standing, flat-screen iDrive monitor are said to give a sense of functional elegance.
Horizontal instrument-panel lines extend into optional two-tone door and side panel trim, which wraps around the driver and front passenger. Rear-seat occupants are treated to contoured seats with recessed head restraints and continuously molded side supports.
In addition to the standard specification trim, customers can choose Sport, Luxury or M-Sport Lines as alternatives that allow visible individualization of the car’s exterior and interior appearance.
A combination of driver assistance systems and mobility services (available as standard or optional under the BMW ConnectedDrive banner) help increase safety, comfort and the ease and convenience of infotainment system use.
Among the highlights are a new generation of BMW Navigation System, which is said to offer extra capability, sharper graphics and 3D elements for the map display. Other available features include: full-colour Head-Up Display; Driving Assistant Plus, which warns the driver of a potential collision with a pedestrian; glare-free LED High Beam Assistant; and the latest iteration of BMW Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go.
Driving Experience Control
The 4 Series Coupe offers drivers the ability to change between sporty, eco or comfort settings, depending on mood or preference. Using a Driving Experience Control switch on the centre console, drivers can select between ECO PRO, COMFORT, SPORT or SPORT on most models.
Each of these selections activates different settings for the powertrain and suspension components.