Traditionalists will say the new 4-series maintains alone a casual affinity to a BMW, like an actionable apprehension in a video game. They’ll additionally agenda the attention-snaring angular aggressive grille. But what’s best black is that it’s not as acceptable to drive as we’d apprehend a adventurous BMW auto to be.
The 4’s redesign catches it up to the accepted G20-generation 3-series. Although the two cars allotment a 112.2-inch wheelbase, the auto is an inch or two longer, wider, and lower and has a added rear track. That advance brings a beyond rear bench that’s tolerable for average-size adults. In profile, the 4 looks about like a scaled-down 8-series, yet clashing the 8, it doesn’t attending absolutely so abundant like a Ford Mustang.
The amend adds to the 4’s barrier weight. It’s now basically a adipose car in the top M440i xDrive trim, with our analysis car agreement a abundant 53.8 percent of that accumulation on its advanced wheels. Alike with 19-inch Michelin Pilot Sport 4S summer tires (18s with all-seasons are standard), it managed alone 0.91 g of skidpad grip, and understeer dominates. We’ve recorded added stick from the newest 3-series and alike some ancestors sedans, although our car did stop from 70 mph in a abbreviate 149 feet.
The M440i’s variable-ratio council is abbreviate on tactility and has an about adaptable accretion of force as you about-face off-center. The rack’s rather quick arrangement alone amplifies its bogus feel. Factor in the adjustable ride from the adaptive dampers and the 4 has veered into grand-touring territory. It’ll still appropriately hustle bottomward a arduous road, but the acquaintance isn’t as acceptable as it acclimated to be.
The M440i xDrive is still quick—3.8 abnormal to 60 mph—thanks to the 382 application from BMW’s alarming turbo 3.0-liter inline-six. A new 48-volt motor-generator adds some pounds yet contributes up to 11 horses to abetment the agent afore the turbo wakes up. Lag is accurately mitigated as accurate by the agile 4.6-second time in our launch-free five-to-60-mph test. Sadly, a chiral is no best offered, but ZF’s all-over eight-speed automated swaps apparatus as acquiescently as ever.
This actuality our aboriginal about-face with the new 4, we’re acquisitive added versions action a afterpiece connection. Our achievement is the four-cylinder 430i model, which comes accepted with non-variable council and acquiescent dampers, will backpack the BMW dynamics bake of yore. It is currently the alone 4-series accessible with rear-wheel drive, admitting a rear-drive six-cylinder archetypal will be added later.
The ablaze achievement of the latest M3 and M4, both of which accept agnate vertical grilles, should advice us acclimatize to the arguable design. But the softer appearance of the M440i xDrive makes it boxy to discount the 4’s new face.