£33,990 - £48,985 Price range
40 - 58 MPG
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.
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.
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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