BMW 4 Series Convertible - ABC Leasing

Car & Driving
The independent definitive BMW 4 Series Convertible video review
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    THE DEUTSCHLAND OPEN(some text hidden)

    By Jonathan Crouch


    Ten Second Review word count: 75

    BMW's second generation 4 Series Convertible switches to a fabric-folding roof and so can now offer a more credible alternative option to executive segment mid-sized cabriolet buyers not already swayed by the competing charms of rival open-topped versions of the Audi A5 and Mercedes C-Class. You won't get the large boot and cutting-edge driving dynamics of the 4 Series Coupe, but compensations come in the form of refinement, security and drop-top desirability. You'd like one.


    Background word count: 104

    Sharper than its predecessor and echoing the bold style of its 4 Series Coupe showroom stablemate, BMW's second generation 4 Series Convertible aims to blend sporting driving pleasure and open-air thrills to continue the 35-year legacy in this model class that began with the Munich maker's first 3 Series Convertible. As before, it sizes up to the same two segment arch-rivals, Audi's A5 Convertible and the Mercedes C-Class Cabriolet - and does so now more directly thanks to the adoption of a fabric roof. And plenty of changes under the skin aim to make it a bit more of a driver's car than before.


    Driving Experience word count: 281

    BMW has worked hard to ensure that this 4 Series Convertible's handling is as close to that of the equivalent Coupe as possible, using extra bracing and special panels to improve body rigidity, which the company says is 4% better than the previous generation metal-topped model. As usual with this model range, there's rear wheel drive and xDrive 4WD for the fastest models (though this AWD system isn't available with lesser engines as it is on the Coupe). Plus there's a freshly developed double-jointed spring-strut front suspension and a 5-link rear axle. Engine-wise, the key news is introduction of 48V mild hybrid tech for the 2.0-litre 184hp diesel engine in the volume 420d. The same mild hybrid tech also features with the six cylinder diesels, the 430d (286hp) and the M440d (340hp). And it's on the quickest mainstream conventional petrol variant too, the six cylinder 374hp M440i xDrive, which features BMW's Sport differential, with electronically-controlled, fully-variable locking function in the rear differential, all of this helping to get the power down through the turns, should you want to drive this car in the kind of enthusiastic manner a likely owner hardly ever would. If you do want the ultimate fast version of this car, you'll be directed to the top M4 Competition M xDrive Convertible model, which has 510hp and gets to 62mph in just 3.7s. Toupees will need to be very firmly tied down. Back in the real world, two conventional 2.0-litre petrol turbo 4 Series Convertible models also feature, the 420i (184hp) and the 430i (258hp). All the engines link up as standard with eight-speed Steptronic auto transmission, which can now be specified with a new optional Sprint function.


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    Scoring

    Category: Compact Car

    Performance
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    Handling
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    Comfort
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    Space
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    Equipment
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