The BMW 4-Series comes in Coupe or Convertible body styles, with rear- or all-wheel drive, and with a choice of four- or six-cylinder engines and six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmissions. Prices range from about $42,000 for the base 428i Coupe to just less than $50,000 for the all-wheel-drive 435xi. Convertibles are priced from just below $50,000, and can be configured beyond $60,000.Just as it does on the 3-Series sedans and wagons and hatchbacks, BMW groups the 4-Series into trim lines also, giving buyers a choice of M Sport, Sport, and Luxury themes. All come with the usual Bluetooth connectivity, power windows/locks/mirrors, and climate control. The Luxury package adds upgraded leather in the cabin, a choice of three interior wood trims, unique color combinations, and exterior high-gloss chrome accents. The Sport line replaces the chrome with high-gloss black exterior cues, red-stitched leather in the interior, and red highlights in the instrument cluster, among other upgrades. The M Sport line gets a unique M aerodynamic kit, an optional exclusive Estoril blue exterior color, Shadowline exterior accents, an anthracite headliner, sport seats, and M-themed interior details.
The 4-Series Convertible's folding hardtop can lower or raise itself in 20 seconds, at speeds of up to 11 mph. BMW says it's fitted the folded top more effectively into the trunk this time, retaining up to 7.8 cubic feet of storage space when the top is down (or 13 cubic feet when it's up). A fold-down rear seat extends the usefulness of the trunk--and on the less practical side, BMW also fits a standard windblock, three-setting neck warmers, and more sound-deadening materials for a longer driving season and for a quieter ride than in the former 3-Series Convertible.
The optional navigation system is governed by the latest version of BMW's iDrive, the roller-controller system that's now flanked by a host of buttons, augmented by voice controls, and layered with a touch-sensitive surface on the controller that lets drivers write out text such as addresses with a fingertip. It comes with real-time traffic data, and can be teamed with a data subscription that adds Google search capability. It's a system that's grown many override layers to the original, austere version that relied only on the knob--and lots of spinning and clicking--but it's still a maze of functionality that takes a few weeks to truly understand and customize.