Our First Experience of the new BMW 4 Series

Here’s a funny story, about how I dressed up and made my way to the airport, I had planned this trip out perfectly… the, while trying to check-in, the airport assistant looks me in the eye and with an amused smile says “Sir, your flight is tomorrow, not today”. How did I miss it? It must have been the excitement, the imagination of being in control and having power at my disposal. The very next day I was on time for my flight to Cape Town with almost 52 butterflies in my stomach, why? The 2021 BMW 4 Series Coupé.

Before it landed in South Africa, the  4 Series was already trending on social media platforms because of its new redesigned kidney grille. It definitely took some getting used to when  seeing it for the first time, however, the more I looked at it, the more I started to admire the radical design. Getting into that front seat was  pure joy while feeling its thick-rimmed steering wheel and smelling the fresh leather seats. Is this the new direction for BMW or is this only for the 4 series? We know that the M3 and M4 Competition will come with the big grille, will this also happen for the next M5 Competition as well as the next M2 Competition? Another question is will this also happen to the SUV’s as part of the M Sport and Competition? I wasn’t a fan of the big grille at first, but now that I see it and think about it, it’s an easier way to distinguish the car without waiting to see the badge behind the car.

I’ve always believed that BMW had found a great balance between function and comfort and I love being able to easily connect and set up my device and the infotainment on the BMW 4 series makes that process easy. It has a large 12.3inch touchscreen, a myriad control that allows you to change settings and navigate the menu via voice control. It comes with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and for music lovers like myself, a beautifully sounding Harman Kardon audio system. Some other amazing offerings are gesture control and a wireless charging pad which did a good job on keeping my 11 Pro powered up throughout the day.

I quickly burned through a good portion of my road trip with the BMW 420d’s twin-turbocharge 3 litre inline six engine that comes with two potencies. The standard version makes 353kW and 550Nm at a six-speed transmission while the competition model makes 375kW and 650Nm an eight-speed transmission. One of my favourite features was the electronically-controlled exhaust that got louder in Sport and Sport Plus drive modes, the loudness could be turned up and down as well pushing the M Sound button.

The new BMW 4 series’s driver engagement was rumoured to be one of its primary missions, so the car comes with standard and optional driver assistance technology such as:

·Adaptive cruise control

·Standard lane-departure warning and lane-keeping assist

·Standard blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert

·Automatic-locking retractors (ALR)

·Impact sensor

The M3 and M4 were simultaneously revealed back in September 2020, with local models said to be available from March 2021. The local line-up is initially limited to the Competition models, which produce more power (375 kW/650 Nm compared with 353 kW and 550 Nm) and are exclusively fitted with an 8-speed dual-clutch gearbox. The South African allocation will initially be rear-wheel-drive only. Later on, BMW will bring in the xDrive version which is equipped with all-wheel-drive and a selectable rear-wheel-drive mode. Expect these towards the end of 2021.

BMW 420i Coupe R762 438

BMW 420d Coupe M Sport R852 716

BMW M440i x Drive Coupe R1 185 954 

BMW M3 Competition R1 860 000

BMW M4 Competition R1 940 000