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2014 BMW 4 Series: 4 Seater Coupe

By Arv Voss, November 23rd, 2013

The 2014 4 Series Coupe heralds the beginning of a new era for coupe cars at BMW. The all-new 4 Series Coupe represents an ideal fit between the 3 Series and 5 Series.

Manufacturer photo: The new BMW 4 Series Coupe is visibly larger in width and wheelbase than the outgoing 3 Series Coupe, and its stretched silhouette sits considerably lower to the road
Manufacturer photo: The new BMW 4 Series Coupe is visibly larger in width and wheelbase than the outgoing 3 Series Coupe, and its stretched silhouette sits considerably lower to the road

The 4 Series is available in two coupe models: the 428i powered by a TwinPower Turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine; and the 435i, which draws its motive force from a TwinPower Turbo 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder. There are individual equipment lines for both the interior and exterior and buyers can choose the Sport or Luxury Lines as alternatives to the standard specification. Meanwhile, the M Sport provides yet another alternative, allowing for visible individualization.

During the press launch, I was able to experience wheel time in the new 428i, which came with a base sticker of $42,500 and a final tag totaling $48,075.

The 428i with its four-cylinder engine has 241 horsepower and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. The 435i obviously kicks out more power in the 3.0-liter motor with 302 horsepower and 295 lb.-ft. of torque at 1,200 rpm.

The 428i is a delight to drive with excellent acceleration capability and ideal on-center feel. The ride quality is planted, but compliant that may be adjusted either up or down to suit driving conditions and styles. Braking is positive as well. Handling characteristics are also adjustable through the Driving Experience Control switch.

Manufacturer photo: The new BMW 4 Series Coupe is visibly larger in width and wheelbase than the outgoing 3 Series Coupe, and its stretched silhouette sits considerably lower to the road

The new BMW 4 Series Coupe offers drivers the ability to change between Sporty, Eco or Comfort Drive settings, depending on mood or preference. Using the Driving Experience Control switch, each selection activates a different setting for the powertrain and suspension componentry.

Both 4 Series coupes are available with either a standard eight-speed automatic transmission or an optional six-speed manual gearbox. Buyers may also choose between a rear-wheel drive configuration or an optional xDrive -- BMW's intelligent all-wheel drive system.

The new BMW 4 Series has a longer wheelbase, wider track and lower ride height than the 3 Series -- and it has the lowest center of gravity of any current BMW production model. This, together with short overhangs, long hood, set-back cabin with the sharply raked windshield, subtly sloped and flowing roofline, give the 4 Series a pleasing visual balance. The coupe's front end is striking, displaying characteristic BMW design features, such as the slightly forward-angled twin-kidney grille.

Moving to the inside, the four-passenger interior blends sporty styling along with purity and quality. In the forward cabin, the utilization of space through the structuring of lines and surfaces into layers gives the cabin a driver orientation, without excluding the front passenger. All controls central to driving are arranged ergonomically around the driver providing ready access to all functions.

A Sport steering wheel, circular instruments in black-panel look and the free-standing, flat-screen iDrive monitor provide a sense of functional elegance. The iDrive Controller -- properly located for easy reach on the center console -- and the armrest between the front seats serves to give the cabin comfort and functionality. The backrest of the coupe's rear seat may be folded down in 40:20:40 segments.

Manufacturer photo: The new BMW 4 Series Coupe is visibly larger in width and wheelbase than the outgoing 3 Series Coupe, and its stretched silhouette sits considerably lower to the road

The Sport Line and Luxury Line deliver different takes on the car's character, adapting the design and color scheme for the kidney grille and air intakes, exterior mirror caps, Air Breathers, trim strips in the front and rear fascias, door sill strips and range of wheel styles to set the coupe apart externally.

For the safety conscious, the new 4 Series Coupe comes with a full suite of both active and passive safety systems and equipment. Connectivity isn't forgotten either with a variety of informational and entertainment sources via BMW's improved iDrive interface.

Specifications

Base price $42,500 (as tested: $48,075)
Curb weight 3,470 lbs.
Displacement 2.0-liter
Epa mileage rating 23 mpg city, 33 mpg highway
Fuel capacity 15.8 gal.
Horsepower (net) 241 at 5000 rpm
Motor type 16-valve DOHC turbo 4-cyl. w/DI
Overall length 182.6 in.
Torque (lb.-ft.) 258 at 1250-4800 rpm
Transmission 6-speed manual
Vehicle type 4-passenger RWD midsize coupe
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