BMW’s updated 4 Series offers a smooth and silent drive

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BMW’s updated 4 Series offers a smooth and silent drive

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BMW’s new coupe-style 4 Series vehicles offer an elegant ride for the driver. [BMW KOREA]

BUSAN - BMW’s newly launched 4 Series, the first overhaul since the series launched in 2013, is a car that prioritizes the driver over those tagging along in the back seats.

The sleek coupe offers a smooth and stable driving experience for the driver with a comfortable seat and soft steering wheel.

BMW’s even number series, including the 4 Series, is known for its sportier exterior and offers a more dynamic driving experience compared to the odd-numbered series. The 4 Series’ flagship Coupe model, therefore, is a sporty-looking two-door vehicle that offers a stronger driving performance than its sister 3 Series. There are currently five models available in Korea, three of which are the Coupe, the Gran Coupe and the Convertible. The other two are high-performance models, the M4 Coupe and M4 Convertible.

The Korea JoongAng Daily took the 4 Series Gran Coupe - a four-door vehicle - out for a 62 km (39 mile) test dive in Busan last Friday. The course from the Hilton Hotel in Busan to Ganjeolgot in Ulsan included both winding coastal roads and highways.

The 4 Series Gran Coupe available in Korea offers two types of diesel engines and two types of gasoline engines. The test-driven Gran Coupe was equipped with a 420i twin turbo gasoline engine that provides 184 horsepower and torque of 27.6 kilogram-meters (199 pounds-feet).

A BMW Korea official explained that the center of gravity of the 4 Series is lower than the 3 Series, and it was apparent that the seat position is also lower compared to other midsize sedans. Although it didn’t hinder the view of the road, there was a somewhat awkward feeling of having to lift the arm higher to grip the steering wheel.

The acceleration was light and very quiet. The speed of over 180 km/h (112 mph) at one point was unnoticed by four reporters riding in the vehicle. Sound from neither the wind nor the road was heard from inside. Tumbling was kept to a minimum although the back seats tended to shake a little more than the front seats.

Yet, the stable ride could be a downside for some seeking a more dynamic drive. After all, there are reasons why people go for the even-numbered series. The engine growling sound was noticeably absent and acceleration was slow above 100 km/h. Its takes 7.6 seconds to reach 100 km/h according to the company. In fact, when the reporter pressed the accelerating pedal to the floor, the car didn’t really respond to it, but instead took its own time speed up.

The infotainment system that was equipped on a pop-up display screen above the center console was easy to see while driving. However, typing the address or changing the destination had to be done while the car was parked. Everything on the display screen needed to be adjusted with a separate control wheel positioned next to the gear lever.

Although the 4 Series vehicles are coupes, the back seat didn’t feel too small. But the cushion felt a little stiff and hard.

The vehicle also had a wireless smartphone charging system.

The price for the Coupe and Gran Coupe models start from 58 million won ($52,000).


BY JIN EUN-SOO [jin.eunsoo@joongang.co.kr]

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