The headline on the BMW web site says the 4 Series is “Designed for Driving Pleasure.” That’s a sort of generic description of BMW’s in general, but the 4 Series is definitely a treat from the driver’s seat. The 4 Series is new to BMW’s lineup, and shares many parts with the 3 Series, but it’s wider and lower and lighter. In fact, it has the lowest center of gravity of any BMW production model currently being offered, which bodes well for the future when the M versions come out.
All told, it has a different, more aggressive character than the 3 Series, both sitting still and on the road. Our test car came equipped with the 241-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder mated to an eight-speed automatic. Drivetrain choices also include a 300-horsepower turbocharged six-cylinder, six-speed manual gearbox and rear- or all-wheel drive.
More horsepower is always good, but I found the small engine to be powerful and smooth, plenty enough for conventional driving, and offering you some useful financial savings through fuel efficiency.
Our test car also came equipped with the M Sport option, which includes aerodynamic bodywork and special wheels, as well as more aggressive suspension, more powerful brakes and really comfortable Sport seats.
This option gives the 4 Series a kind of low, mean appearance that leads you to expect a certain kind of driving experience, and I certainly got what I expected. You sit so low, and the controls are all so oriented toward the driver, that it feels like a high-performance 2-seat sports car that just happens to have two more seats in back. The tuning of the M Sport suspension lets you feel the texture of the road through the seat of your pants and the palm of your hands, which is a rare thing these days, even in sports cars.
It corners flat and accelerates so quickly that, particularly with the engine in ‘Sport’ mode and paddle-shifting your way up through the gears, every highway on-ramp is a golden opportunity to enjoy yourself. You just want to make sure that you turn in gently and power out hard… and keep an eye on your rear view mirrors.
For more information, or to arrange a test drive of the new BMW 4 Series, please contact Braman BMW in West Palm Beach.