BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe

A 4 Series coupe with two extra doors and bigger boot

7/10
wowscore
This score is awarded by our team of expert reviewers after extensive testing of the car
  • Great handling
  • Range of efficient engines
  • Added practicality over coupe
  • Not as practical as 3 Series saloon
  • Expensive options list
  • A very niche product

£33,990 - £48,985 Price range

5 Seats

40 - 58 MPG

Review

The 4 Series Gran Coupe fills yet another niche in BMW’s lineup, joining more conventional 4 Series models such as the Coupe and Convertible. In the same way as the larger 6 Series Gran Coupe, the 4 Series-based model provides coupe-style looks with a more practical layout.

As with the rest of the 3 and 4 Series ranges, we bestow high praise on the Gran Coupe, commending its fine handling and range of powerful engines, which combine strong performance with excellent efficiency. BMW hopes that the practicality-boosting hatchback and extra pair of doors will tempt buyers. 

BMW hopes that the practicality-boosting hatchback and extra pair of doors will tempt buyers who don’t want a saloon.

There are two ways of looking at the 4 Series Gran Coupe – either you can consider it as a 4 Series coupe with easier access to more spacious rear seats, or as a more stylish 3 Series saloon with compromised rear headroom.

Either way, the dashboard design has much in common with both of them, and in general, this is no bad thing – it’s well screwed together and the design is pleasant enough. 

A 480-litre boot volume is equal to what is offered from the 3 Series saloon, but the tight central-rear seat means that it’s better suited to carrying four rather than five.

There are many reasons to be cheerful about the driving experience of the 4 Series Gran Coupe. It handles beautifully, with fine balance and a playful nature while the steering is sharp and accurate, if not exactly the most feelsome.

For £1,700, buyers can opt for an xDrive four-wheel drive system, which will help traction in slippery conditions, but most of the year round it’ll just add unnecessary weight and reduce fuel efficiency. Whichever variant you go for, the brakes are strong and the ride is generally very composed, though on bigger wheels it can be a little busy over poorer surfaces.

BMW offer a very wide choice of engines in the Gran Coupe, ranging from the wallet-friendly 420d to the impressively rapid 440i. Thanks to a great mix of performance and economy, the 420d is the strongest seller, yet the four-cylinder diesels are starting to sound a little too gruff now. The smoother and quieter petrols are a better bet, particularly if you don’t cover lots of miles. 

Buyers have a choice of a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic gearbox. The automatic is definitely worth the extra expense as it offers smooth, fast shifts, while the manual has a springy, slightly vague action and is difficult to put into reverse. The auto costs an extra £1,550, but returns marginally better fuel economy figures. 

The low CO2 emissions make the 418d an ideal choice for company car users, given that it emits a measly 121g/km. A fuel consumption figure of 62.8mpg means that you'll be driving for a long time between fuel stops too. At 141hp, it isn't the most rapid of cars though, especially in something which has sporting intentions.
If the 418d isn't quite powerful enough, then the extra 43hp the 420d offers should suffice. A 0-60mph time of 7.7 seconds certainly can't be sniffed at, especially when it can return a claimed 61.4mpg. Unfortunately, some testers note that the motor is a little clattery at idle, and too gruff at the top end. Still, CO2 emissions are only marginally higher than the 418d's at 124g/km, so this a great unit for those who will be driving higher mileages.
The 2.0-litre petrol unit produces 182hp in the 420i, and the 4 cylinders hum along smoothly and quietly, especially lower down the rev range. The fuel consumption figures are strong when compared to similar Audi and Mercedes rivals, at 44.1mpg.
This 2.0-litre twin-turbocharged unit is used widely across the BMW range, and with good reason. Producing 245hp and 280lb ft of torque, it delivers excellent performance in which ever car BMW drops it into. Here it will hit 60mph from a standstill in exactly six seconds and on to a limited top speed of 155mph. A claimed figure of 42.8mpg is not to be sniffed at, and aside from sounding slightly dull, it's a very accomplished unit.
The turbocharged 3.0-litre straight six is the most potent model in the range. Producing 306hp, it'll hit 60mph from a standstill in 5.5 seconds, and sound smooth and refined (if not particularly pulse-raising) on the way. A figure of 34.9mpg isn't fantastic though, so it's quite a difficult engine to justify.
These are general, non engine-specific reviews of the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe. They give you a good idea of what the car is like without going into detail on one specific model.

Although the Gran Coupe hasn’t been tested by Euro NCAP, given it’s similarities to the rest of the 3 and 4 Series range, it will likely be a five-star car. Six airbags are equipped as standard, while a whole range of preventative systems is available.

An optional head-up display offers drivers access to speed and satnav instructions via an image projected onto the base of the windscreen, while cameras offering a 360-degree view make manoeuvring much more simple.

It’s hard to judge the value of the Gran Coupe. Although it costs about £3,000 more than the more practical 3 series, it does come better equipped, while it costs the same as the regular coupe, but offers two extra doors. 

An automatic tailgate can be handy when lugging heavy items around, while heated leather seats and climate control are standard across the range. If you want to add a little aggression to your 4GC, you can opt for the M Sport pack. You’d have to be pretty committed to the cause, though, and you’ll need to fork out £3,000 for the privilege.

Conclusion

Overall, it’s easy to be impressed by the breadth of abilities that the 4 Series Gran Coupe offers. It is nice to drive, well-built and offers a great range of engines. However, the same can be said of the regular 3 Series saloon, which is also cheaper, but doesn’t have the GC’s looks. For some, those will be worth paying a bit extra for.

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