It first seemed like something that was not going to happen sooner than I expected, but it has happened.
I am talking about the oversized kidney grille that is worn by the second-gen BMW 4 Series Coupe. However, come to think of it, the brand’s kidney grille size has been growing with time over the years.
Let’s first get the elephant out of the room.
When I notified my social media followers that I will be jotting down to the Western Cape to drive the all-new BMW 4 Series Coupe, my post was ambushed with questions such as, ‘how does the kidney grille look?’ and ‘how do I feel about the grille?’
In my honest opinion, there is nothing wrong with the massive grille. It looks pretty, and while some of my friends do not like it at all, it blends in nicely with the slim headlights, giving the new 4 Series an aggressive stance.
Now that I have cleared the air surrounding the oversized grille, it is time to understand what the new 4 Series Coupe is all about. Firstly, it joins the local market in three derivatives: 420i, 420d and the range-topping M440i xDrive, well, before the M4 comes.
The 420i and 420d Coupes are offered in standard base or the M Sport package, while the M440i xDrive is offered as an M Performance vehicle.
The 420i Coupe is powered by a four-cylinder petrol engine with 135 kW of power and 300 Nm.
It hurtles from a stop to 100 km/h in 7.5 seconds before hitting the limiter at 240 km/h. Its fuel consumption is rated at 5.8 – 5.3 l/100 km
The 420d, being the sole oil-burner in the line-up, has a four-pot turbodiesel engine with 140 kW and 400 Nm of torque. It gets to the 100 km/h mark in 7.1 seconds while its top speed is capped at 240 km/h. Fuel economy is at 4.2 – 3.9 l/100 km
The M440i xDrive uses a 3.0-litre in-line straight-six petrol engine that gushes out 275 kW and 500 Nm. All that amount of oomph is sent to all four wheels via BMW’s xDrive system, giving it a 4.5 seconds sprint to 100km/h from a standstill.
The top speed is capped at 250 km/h.
All derivatives spawn an eight-speed Steptronic transmission.
At the launch I only got behind the wheel of the 420d and M440i xDrive. I tell you what, the 420d gets my thumbs up as it offers a sublime balance between sporty and performance.
The M440i is a more exciting proposition and its xDrive system gives one confidence on the road.
The new BMW 4 Series has changed and it is sharper than the model it replaces, however, there are only two issues I have experienced. The first one being the rear headroom; it is tight for tall people due to the sloping roofline.
The second issue is that the M440i does not sound as aggressive as the previous-gen. You get an aggressive cacophony yet very subtle.
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