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Damn, The All-New 2021 BMW 4 Series Coupe Has One Seriously Ugly Grille

2021 BMW 4 Series Coupe

When the BMW Concept 4 was introduced at the Frankfurt Motor Show last September, I remember people (myself included) losing their minds over that gaping kidney grille up front, wondering what would possess them to go with such a polarizing design. Was Chris Bangle back in charge and making bad decisions once again?

Like many, we figured it was purposely done to stand out, since it was a concept after all. But as you can see here, sadly that wasn’t the case. The BMW 4 Series Coupe made its world debut, and while it’s certainly a looker from certain angles, that front grille is just awful. You think after they caught so much flack over the concept, they would have gone back and rethought the grille design. But apparently not.

BMW tries to justify the “striking front end” of the new 4 Series, claiming that it provides adequate cooling for the more powerful engines. That grille is framed by a 3D mesh with LED headlights and corner lights flanking. In back, darkened LED taillights extend into the quarter panels and also toward each other. Frameless windows lighten the look and feel of the doors.

2021 BMW 4 Series Coupe

Compared to the previous generation 4 Series Coupe, the new 4 Series is 5.2 inches longer, 1.0 inch wider, 0.4 inches taller and features a 1.6 inch longer wheelbase and 1.4 inch wider front and 1.2 inch wider rear tracks. The aerodynamic efficiency of the new 4 Series Coupe sees a noticeable improvement from a previous Cx of 0.29 to a Cx of 0.25.

All of the new 4 Series models enjoy a boost in horsepower and torque over the models they replace. Powering the new 430i and 430i xDrive coupe is an updated B46 2.0-liter 4-cylinder BMW TwinPower turbocharged engine delivering 255HP (an increase of 7HP) and 294 ft-lbs of torque (an increase of 36 ft-lbs), good for a 0-60 time of 5.5 seconds (5.3 seconds when equipped with xDrive).

Meanwhile, the new M440i xDrive Coupe is powered by a B58 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder BMW TwinPower turbocharged engine that produces 382HP (an increase of 62HP) and 369 ft-lbs of torque (an increase of 39 ft-lbs), rocketing the M440i xDrive Coupe from 0-60 in 4.3 seconds. The M440i xDrive also comes standard with a limited-slip differential.

2021 BMW 4 Series Coupe

Both 4 Series models send that power to the ground through a sporty 8-speed automatic with a launch control function. (Want a manual? Too bad, you’ll have to wait for the M4) In addition, both the 4- and 6-cylinder engines use a single, twin-scroll turbo, high precision fuel injection (operating at over 5,000 psi), VALVETRONIC fully variable valve timing and Double-VANOS variable camshaft timing.

A new 48-volt mild-hybrid system is standard on the M440i xDrive Coupe. The 48-volt starter / generator unit is complemented by a separate 48-volt battery which helps to recuperate and store energy from deceleration, braking and from excess electricity generated while driving in Sport mode. This energy can be used to boost performance (+11HP) during hard acceleration.

The 2021 BMW 4-Series is more rigid than ever, while still making use of aluminum for the hood, front fenders, doors, even the shock absorber housing to keep weight down. Additional bracing has been added, connecting the front shock towers to the bulkhead and to the front end as well as the rear axle area to help the new 4 Series deliver better agility and precision.

2021 BMW 4 Series Coupe interior

For those wanting a sportier ride, the M440i with the optional Adaptive M Suspension is the way to go, as it allows you to vary the damping when switching between driving modes. And while you’re at it, make sure you opt for the performance non-run flat tires, as they will give you the best grip at the limits, along with added comfort.

Naturally, BMW has equipped the new 4 Series Coupe with a wide variety of driver assist features that we’ve come to expect on any new car today (eg. blind spot detection, lane departure warning, rear cross traffic alert, etc), along with optional features like adaptive cruise control, parking assist, and even a “drive recorder” that’s very Tesla-esque.

The BMW 4 Series Coupe is set to launch in October, with the 430i to start at $46,595, the 430i xDrive starting at $48,595, and the M440i xDrive starting at $59,495.

Let us know what you think of the BMW 4 Series Coupe in the comments below!

 
BMW 430i, 430i xDrive and M440i xDrive Coupe Specifications

    430i 430i xDrive M440i xDrive
Seats 4 4 4
Number of Doors 2 2 2
Drive type RWD AWD AWD
Length inches 187.9 187.9 188.0
Width inches 72.9 72.9 72.9
Width including mirrors inches 81.9 81.9 81.9
Height inches 54.6 54.8 54.8
Wheelbase inches 112.2 112.2 112.2
Ground clearance inches 5.0 5.1 5.1
Turning radius feet  18.7 19.7 19.7
         
Shoulder width front inches 55.1 55.1 55.1
Shoulder room 2nd row inches 51.0 51.0 51.0
Legroom front inches 41.8 41.8 41.8
Legroom 2nd row inches 34.5 34.5 34.5
Headroom front inches 38.0 38.0 38.0
Headroom 2nd row inches 35.2 35.2 35.2
Trunk volume ft³ 12.0 12.0 12.0
Fuel Tank capacity gallons 15.6 15.6 15.6
Curb weight lbs. 3,578 3,708 3,977
Gross vehicle weight lbs. 4,475 4,619 4,949
Payload lbs. 714 728 886
Weight distribution front / rear percent 51.8 / 48.3 52.9 / 47.1 53.8 / 46.2
         
Engine type B46B20O1 B46B20O1 B58B30O1
Induction   Turbocharged Turbocharged Turbocharged
Cylinders 4 4 6
Valves per cylinder 4 4 4
Bore x Stroke mm 82.0 x 94.6 82.0 x 94.6 82.0 x 94.6
Displacement cm³ 1,998 1,998 2,998
Compression rate :1 10.2 10.2 10.2
Engine power hp 255 @

5,000 – 6,500

255 @

5,000 – 6,500

382 @

5,800 – 6,500

Engine torque ft.-lbs. 294 @

1,550 – 4,400

294 @

1,550 – 4,400

364 @

1,800 – 5,000

Fuel type Gasoline Gasoline Gasoline
Recommended Fuel Premium Premium Premium
Engine oil capacity quarts 5.5 5.5 6.9
Output per liter hp/liter 127.6 127.6 127.4
         
Transmission type Sport Steptronic Sport Steptronic Sport Steptronic
Gear ratios 1st gear 5.25 5.25 5.25
2nd 3.36 3.36 3.36
3rd 2.17 2.17 2.17
4th 1.72 1.72 1.72
5th 1.14 1.14 1.14
6th 1.00 1.00 1.00
7th 0.82 0.82 0.82
8th 0.64 0.64 0.64
Reverse gear 3.71 3.71 3.71
Final drive ratio 2.81 2.81 2.81
         
Power-steering type EPS EPS EPS
Steering ratio :1 14.1 14.9 13.6
         
18” Tires, standard front / rear   225/45R18 225/45R18 225/45R18
18” Wheels, standard front / rear inches 18 x 7.5 18 x 7.5 18 x 7.5
19” Tires, optional front / rear   225/40R19 225/40R19 225/40R19
19” Wheels, optional front / rear inches 19 x 9.0 19 x 8.0 19 x 8.0
19” Tires, optional rear   255/35R19 255/35R19 255/35R19
19” wheels, optional rear inches 19 x 8.5 19 x 8.5 19 x 8.5
         
Track, front inches 62.3 62.3 62.3
Rear, track inches 63.9 63.9 63.9
Cx 0.25 0.26 0.30
         
0-60 mph seconds 5.5 5.3 4.3
Top speed (with perf. tires) mph 130 (155) 130 (155) 130 (155)
EPA Fuel Economy, city / hwy mpg tbd tbd tbd
3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Paulo Trindade

    July 4, 2020 at 12:57 am

    In my entire adult life the only model of car I’ve owned is a 3/4 series coupe. I order a new one every 3 years, currently on #6 and was looking forward to the M4 that would be #7. That part of my life is over, I will not buy this ridiculousness with a grill whose two functions are to ventilate the front bumper and look ugly. BMW design has always been about efficiency and performance. Sure the details look good, but there is a purpose to them. The purpose of this grill is to scream “look at me! Look at me!” No thank you, a second year design student would get a C for a car where the front license plate needs to be pegged to the grille. I guess every company has to screw up sometimes, but dammit did they have to do it to my car?

  2. David McCoy

    September 24, 2020 at 11:52 pm

    It’s as if the latest Honda Civic designers got a hold of a BMW contract. What in the world are they thinking?

  3. Sujeet Patel

    September 25, 2020 at 8:53 am

    I wish I knew David, this design direction is definitely going to cost BMW some sales..

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