2019 BMW 4-Series
2019 BMW 4-Series
The BMW 4-Series family of vehicles includes a coupe, convertible, and a four-door Gran Coupe sedan. With engines, the family grows even larger: There’s a 430i with a turbo-4, and a 440i with a turbo-6 and either rear- or all-wheel drive.
The short version: We’ll take any one of them.
The 2019 4-Series returns for 2019 with few changes, except for the addition of automatic emergency braking as standard equipment, along with navigation and an 8.8-inch infotainment display.
The turbo-4 has 248 horsepower, and can power the car to 60 mph in less than six seconds. That’s quick enough for the real world. The 320-hp 440i, with its turbo-6, can accelerate from zero to 60 in less than five seconds.
Both connect to a smooth and smart 8-speed automatic, but a 6-speed manual is available on coupes for purists. Ride and handling are blessed with BMW’s usual fluency.
The 2019 4-Series hasn’t been crash-tested yet. Automatic emergency braking comes with each one. Other active safety features, such as blind-spot monitors, adaptive cruise control, active lane control, and a surround-view camera system are options.
The rear-wheel-drive 430i coupe, convertible and Gran Coupe are all EPA-rated at 24 mpg city, 34 highway, 27 combined, on premium fuel. All-wheel drive costs 1 or 2 mpg, depending on the model. The 440i coupe and Gran Coupe get 21/32/25 mpg, while the convertible gets 21/29/24 mpg.
The BMW 4-Series is available as a 430i (about $45,000), or about $51,000 as a 440i. The coupe and Gran Coupe cost approximately the same, while the convertible costs about $8,000 more. All-wheel drive, which BMW calls xDrive, is available on all models for $2,000.
The 430i coupe comes with synthetic leather upholstery, a moonroof, power front seats, automatic climate control, keyless ignition, Bluetooth connectivity, navigation, an 8.8-inch infotainment display, automatic emergency braking, 18-inch wheels, and Apple CarPlay compatibility for one year.
Most of the options are bundled into packages that add sport, luxury, or safety. Few stand-alone features are available. Convertibles are equipped with active roll protection.
Fully loaded, the 440i xDrive Convertible can cost more than $73,000, almost as much as a high-performance M4.
They all look good, but the 2019 4-Series Gran Coupe and convertible look best. The long nose and sleek windshield of the current 4-Series are sublime and its proportions are beautiful, especially as the sleek Gran Coupe. It’s a design that endures, even while BMW prepares a replacement that’s coming within a year.
The cabin of the 4-Series cars is relatively plain, but still expressive, and the infotainment software is powerful, though the infotainment knob is a bit of a reach for the driver.
The 4-Series’ power front seats are quite comfortable. Power lumbar adjustment comes in a package with heated seats and blind-spot monitors, while a different set of sport seats with even more bolstering are available. The interior materials are high in quality; the synthetic leather could pass for the real thing.
Comfort in the rear is harder to find, especially in the coupe or convertible, with the low rooflines and 33.7 inches of legroom. The Gran Coupe at least has two rear doors, so it’s easier to get in and out.
The Gran Coupe also has a big trunk, with 17 cubic feet of space. The coupe has 15.7 cubic feet and the convertible 13.1 with the top up, 7.8 with it down and stowed.
As should be expected in a car like this, the cabin is quiet, including in the convertible with its insulated top. Regardless of body style, the 4-Series is quiet and comfortable on the road without much engine noise filtering into the cabin.
The turbo-4 in the 430i is admirably smooth, with a broad powerband and no turbo lag. It’s better and smoother with the automatic, we think.
The turbo-6 goes to the heart of what BMW promises enthusiast drivers. It makes 320 horsepower with 330 pound-feet torque that seems to provide endless and effortless pull, as it effortlessly accelerates to 60 mph in less than five seconds. It costs about $6000 more, but it belongs in this car.
BMW’s all-wheel-drive system, called xDrive, divides the power 40/60, front-to-rear, but when the situation demands, can move the power all to the front wheels, or all to the rear wheels.
There are three available suspensions: standard, M Sport, and adaptive dampers. We’ve only been able to get seat time in models with the expensive adaptive dampers, which have two normal and sport modes. The difference between the modes is vivid.
The steering is relaxed but attentive. It builds weight quickly in Sport and Sport+ modes, but doesn’t feel too heavy or twitchy. It’s in fitting with the 4-Series ethic: Like a 3-Series, but more beautiful.
The 2019 BMW 4-Series marries more attractive bodies to the running gear we’ve loved in the 3-Series. The turbo-4 drivetrain can’t be faulted, but we’d never pass the chance to drive a turbo-6 BMW—especially with the flawless 8-speed automatic. Ride and handling are in perfect tune with the power levels—and there’s always the M4 if even that turbo-6 power isn’t enough.