The 4 Series Coupe may boast interior refinement and sporty handling, but it’s definitely its sexy and stylish look that is of greatest appeal.
You could be forgiven for thinking that with the 4 Series facelift, the engineers basically sat in a room, diddled their thumbs for a couple of weeks, and came out after that saying, “Ah yes, we have done it.”
The changes are relatively minor and rather hard to spot. And yet, that might be the best decision they could have made.
The 4 Series Coupe is a damn fine-looking car. The sleek and sporty exterior is immediately striking, augmented by the M Sport package that tacks on aggressive bumpers front and rear. Bi-LED head lights now come standard, while the elongated design of the rear lights makes the car look more muscular and aggressive.
Part of the 4 Series’ appeal is its sexy looks, and this model is very much the same.
As you’d expect from a Bimmer, the interior is high-quality, premium, modern and
comfortable. This update brings with it some equipment improvements, most notably the infotainment system, which now comes with Navigation System Professional.
There are other little details that have been changed, but unless someone told you, you probably wouldn’t notice (electroplated inserts in the air outlet surrounds and control panels in the door, for example). That’s a good thing, though. Despite basically being four-years old, the inherent Bimmer quality in the 4 Series still very much stands the test of time.
Dialling it in
We drove the 425d variant, which is something of an odd proposition. It’s not the most economical (that would be the 420d), nor the most exciting (440i), and it’s not a variant available in Singapore either (we only have the petrols).
So how is this particular engine? It’s a 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel producing 221bhp and 450Nm of torque – punchy enough and usable enough, but it’s nothing spectacular.
It’s the car’s dynamic behaviour that most impresses. Balance-wise, the Coupe is much better-sorted than the Convertible. The weight is distributed 50:50, so in corners it feels neutral and much more predictable.
Built on the excellent 3 Series platform (one of the best-driving compact sedans), the 4 Series’ wider stance and stiffer suspension setup make it a keen corner carver. It doesn’t have the same suppleness of a 3 Series, but that’s a compromise worth making, we think.
There’s not a great amount of feel from the steering wheel, but the car responds well to steering inputs and is sharp and balanced as we threw it around corners. With the Adaptive M Suspension in Sport mode, we found ourselves thoroughly enjoying the rhythm of flowing through multiple corners on quiet Portuguese roads.
Niche but nice
So what do we make of this updated 4 Series? Well, the little tweaks that the BMW engineers have made have helped the 4 Series Coupe feel more current, but fundamentally it’s still an excellently composed and dynamic package, and we’re glad the boffins haven’t messed around with that.
As far as options go, the Coupe is almost certainly the one to go for over the Convertible. In Singapore you have the choice of the 420i, the 430i or the 440i (the M4 not withstanding). With our spell in the 425d, we’re pretty sure that regardless of engine choice, you’re still getting a car that ticks all the right boxes – it handles well, the cabin is modern and premium, and perhaps most importantly, the car looks sexy as hell.