BMW 4 Series Convertible review
The BMW 4 Series Convertible comes with strong yet efficient engine and a swanky cabin. That grille might take some getting used to, mind you.
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Given that convertibles are bought for not only how they drive, but also how they look, the ‘striking’ grille on the new BMW 4 Series drop-top is definitely a conversation point.
Undeniably, the most notable feature of the new BMW 4 Series Convertible is that huge grille, but the front end also features LED lights (laser lights are optional), and a long, creased bonnet.
At the rear it’s more traditional, with a familiar rear end from other BMW models. There’s a set of sleek taillights that spread out into the boot lid. Of course, this being the Convertible model, there’s also the soft-top roof.
Previous BMW convertibles have used folding hard-tops but this new model uses a soft roof, which BMW says is 40 per cent lighter than a metal roof.
It’s fully automatic, and at the touch of a button, it can open or close in just 18 seconds at speeds of up to 31mph. BMW also says it’s quieter inside than a car with a traditional soft-top thanks to a “panel bow” design.
BMW does driving, infotainment and cabin quality very well, but that grille? Well, I think it will grow on you...
The BMW 4 Series Convertible’s cabin is similar to the normal 4 Series, with its digital dials and large infotainment screen on the dashboard. The leather sports seats are heated in the front, and the rear set is designed for two passengers.
In the UK M Sport trim is the entry-level car, which means all versions get sporty suspension, 18-inch alloy wheels, sat-nav, electric seats, a reversing camera and three-zone climate control.
If that’s not enough you can upgrade to the M Sport Pro Edition, which gets 19-inch alloy wheels, different headlights, adaptive dampers in the suspension and a sportier exhaust note (via electronic enhancement rather than a sports exhaust).
Safety kit available on the BMW 4 Series Convertible includes lane-keep assist with steering functionality, lane-departure warning, a reversing camera and autonomous emergency braking (AEB).
The BMW 4 Series Convertible has 385 litres of boot space when the roof is up, but this reduces down to 300 litres when it’s folded away. That’s still a reasonable amount of space for a convertible car. The BMW 4 Series Convertible is a four-seater, but has two doors so getting in the back will require a bit of clambering.
An eight-speed automatic is standard on every BMW 4 Series Convertible, but there’s quite a wide range of engines to pick from. There are three petrols and three diesels, some coming with mild hybrid technology.
The 420i is the cheapest model, and uses a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol with 184hp. 0-62mph takes 8.2 seconds, and it should manage around 46mpg. The diesel equivalent of this engine is the 420d, which is also a 2.0-litre unit with similar power, but it’s a bit quicker from 0-62mph (it takes 7.6 seconds) and more economical (over 62mpg).
Next up is the 430i model, which is also a four-cylinder engine but it has 258hp, which enables a 0-62mph sprint in 6.2 seconds. It will do around 44mpg according to official tests. There’s an equivalent 286hp 430d which goes from 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds and will do 50mpg (but it’s not out until July 2021).
At the top of the range, there are the M440i and M440d models. These are both six-cylinder engines, petrol and diesel respectively. The M440i is the fastest model, with 374hp, so it can go from 0-62mph in just 4.9 seconds. It’ll manage around 38mpg.
Go for the M440d instead and you’ll see about 45mpg, but this version isn’t coming out at launch – you’ll have to wait until November 2021 for it. It could be worth it, as 0-62mph takes just 5.1 seconds.
Prices for the BMW 4 Series Convertible range start at £45,785 for the entry-level model and go all the way up to £59,645 for the top-spec M440i. Expect to add even more on once you’ve added a few options, too.
While 430d and M440d models aren’t out until later in 2021, the petrol and lower-powered diesel variants will be available from March 2021.
We’ll be driving the 4-Series Convertible before long, so we’ll let you know what it’s like as soon as we have. Meantime take a look at our full in-depth review of the BMW 4 Series Coupe.