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BMW M4 review

The BMW M4 is a sensational performance car hiding under rather divisive styling.

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wowscore
9/10
This score is awarded by our team of
expert reviewers
With nearly 60 years of experience between them, carwow’s expert reviewers thoroughly test every car on sale on carwow, and so are perfectly placed to present you the facts and help you make that exciting decision
after extensive testing of the car

What's good

  • Exceptional to drive
  • Plenty of power
  • Decent boot space

What's not so good

  • Alternatives are more comfortable
  • Not much rear headroom
  • Looks can be divisive

BMW M4: what would you like to read next?

Is the BMW M4 a good car?

The BMW M4 is a high-performance coupe alternative to the likes of the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, Audi RS5 and Mercedes-AMG C63. Mechanically speaking, its pretty much identical to the M3 but was spun off a few years ago into its own model as a sleeker coupe version of the famous 3er. It’s back in a new form, with just as much punch as you’d expect from an M car, but brings a bit of a dilemma in design too.

You see, BMW has been a bit like your teenage son or daughter rebelliously sneaking out one afternoon to get a nose piercing you’ve told them not to. It was known BMW had plans for the snarling great grille you see at the front of the M4 but, despite widespread outcry not to do it, it went ahead and put it into production anyway.

Whether you love the looks or hate them, there’s more to the outlandish styling of the BMW M4 than just the ‘kidney’ (maybe lungs would be appropriate) grille. Huge intakes sit either side of the bottom of the front bumper, while down the side swollen wheel arches make it stand out from a regular 4 Series. In fact, the only bit of bodywork shared with the standard car is the boot lid — though here it has a spoiler tacked on top. You’ll see a quad-exit exhaust sat below a carbon fibre diffuser, and happily, those huge tailpipes are real.

You can choose between two alloy wheel designs as well, with the front pair 19-inches and the rear 20-inches in size.

You won’t mistake the BMW M4 for a run-of-the-mill 4 Series inside. It’s laden with M-coloured stitching, M-badges everywhere and if that wasn’t enough, it’s like somebody vomited carbon fibre everywhere. A thick model-specific steering wheel features as well as standard electrically-adjustable sports seats that come with illuminated M logos, though can opt for carbon fibre bucket seats if you want a more race car-akin feel.

This version of the BMW M4 is a bit longer than the old car as well, so there’s more room in the back. It’s pretty decent for legroom considering it’s a coupe, but headroom is pretty limited because of the sloping roofline.

For no extra cost in the BMW M4, you get a fantastic infotainment system on a 10.1-inch screen. It’s intuitive and dead easy to use, plus there’s finally support for Android Auto in addition to Apple CarPlay. Both can be connected wirelessly, as well.

In front of you, there’s a 12.3-inch digital drivers display for key driving info, and these have plenty of customisation to them too, including racy-looking M-specific displays.

The new BMW M4 is nothing short of sensational, and I’m excited to see how blisteringly quick the all-wheel-drive version will be.

Mat Watson
Mat Watson
carwow expert

There’s a reasonable amount of boot space in the BMW M4, with 440 litres. That’s 35 more than the old car and a fair bit more than the Mercedes-AMG C63’s 355 litres.

If you’re buying a BMW M4 though, you’re likely after performance — and this latest version has bags of it. Its 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged straight-six engine is good for 510hp and 650Nm of torque in Competition form (which is all you can get in the UK), sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic gearbox and fires the M4 from 0-60mph in 3.9 seconds and on to a 155mph limited top speed. You can get that raised to 180mph as part of a package that also includes carbon-ceramic brakes, but it’ll cost you £8,000.

When you’re driving it hard, it doesn’t feel quite as spiky and unpredictable as the old car — largely in part because of amazing levels of grip at the rear. It feels sharper than the likes of the Audi RS5, yet not as intimidating as the last M4.

It’s not just a brutal performance car though and does the normal stuff pretty well. Switch everything into Comfort mode and you can cruise along pretty comfortably with lighter steering, though the suspension still has a pretty firm edge to it.

Just as you would your firstborn if they rocked back home with a nose piercing though, you can look past the styling and appreciate the BMW M4 for how amazing it is. You might even grow to like the looks, too. If you do, check out the latest BMW M4 deals to see how much you could save.

How practical is it?

Boot space is pretty good in the BMW M4, though rear headroom isn’t fantastic.

Boot (seats up)
440 litres
Boot (seats down)
-

This new BMW M4 is a bit longer than the old car as well, so there’s more room in the back for passengers. It’s pretty decent for legroom considering it’s a coupe, but headroom is pretty limited because of the sloping roofline.

Upgrade to the carbon bucket front seats though and there’s a little more space in the — so you can slouch a little for more headroom if you like.

There’s a reasonable amount of boot space in the BMW M4, with 440 litres. That’s 35 more than the old car and a fair bit more than the Mercedes-AMG C63’s 355 litres. You get an electric tailgate as standard as well, which will help take off the load if you’re lugging in loads of cargo.

What's it like to drive?

The BMW M4 is a sublime and sharp performance car, but alternatives are a bit more comfortable

Powering the M4 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged straight-six engine is good for 510hp and 650Nm of torque in Competition form, sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed automatic gearbox and fires the M4 from 0-60mph in 3.9 seconds and on to a 155mph limited top speed. You can get that raised to 180mph as part of a package that also includes carbon-ceramic brakes, but it’ll cost you £8,000.

There is a lower-powered version of the M4 available in other markets too, which has the option of a six-speed manual gearbox. You can’t get that in the UK though, sorry purists.

When you’re driving it hard, the BMW M4 doesn’t feel quite as spiky and unpredictable as the old car — largely in part because of amazing levels of grip at the rear. It feels sharper than the likes of the Audi RS5, yet not as intimidating as the last M4.

It’s not just a brutal performance car though, and does the normal stuff pretty well. Switch everything into Comfort mode and you can cruise along pretty comfortably with lighter steering, though the suspension still has a pretty firm edge to it. If you want something a little more everyday-friendly, the RS5 is the way to go.

What's it like inside?

Like carbon fibre? You’ll be right at home in the rather spacious BMW M4. At least there’s no mistaking it for a regular 4 Series.

BMW M4 colours

Metallic - Black sapphire
Free
Metallic - Brooklyn grey
Free
Metallic - Isle of Man green
Free
Metallic - Portimao blue
Free
Metallic - Skyscraper grey
Free
Metallic - Toronto Red
Free
Solid - Alpine white
Free
Solid - Sao Paulo yellow
Free
BMW Individual metallic paint - Aventurine red lll
From £1,100
BMW Individual metallic paint - Dravit grey
From £1,100
BMW Individual metallic paint - Tanzanite blue
From £1,100
Individual paint - Frozen Orange II
From £2,985
Individual paint - Frozen Portimao blue
From £2,985
Individual paint - Frozen black
From £2,985
Individual paint - Frozen deep grey
From £2,985
BMW Individual special paint - Frozen Brilliant white
From £3,985
Next Read full interior review
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