BMW has given its 4 Series range a midlife update (LCI - Life Cycle Impulse - in BMW-speak) that extends to the two-door Coupe, the Convertible and the five-door Gran Coupe. The M4 hasn't been left out either.
Tell us about that M4 first, so.
Buyers of the M4 Competition Package now have the option of a new forged 20-inch alloy wheel design in black for starters, but all M4s (just Coupe and Convertible, remember) get adaptive full-LED headlights as standard, with the new hexagonal illuminated shape. Those are complemented at the back by a new LED light signature. Other than that there are new illuminated M logos in the front seats and a few new materials sprinkled around the cabin. Also standard is the ConnectedDrive navigation package, including inductive mobile phone charging and a WiFi hotspot.
A new Exterior Carbon package, priced at £3,000 for the M4 Coupe, adds carbon styling components such as front and lower trims, rear diffuser and spoiler. The Exterior Carbon package is also available for the M4 Convertible, at £2,500, with the front and lower trims and the rear diffuser. Or for £400, buyers can specify the Carbon Mirror package, which adds unique carbon fibre mirrors, while the Black Exterior Package (£500, standard M4s only) adds black kidney grilles, side bars and exhaust tips. The interior also can be upgraded with the Carbon Interior pack (£850), featuring an Alcantara steering wheel with carbon fibre inlays, plus a gear surround and selector that feature the same carbon fibre finish.
Presumably some of that is on the regular models too?
Indeed, though bi-LED headlights are the norm and the full-LED set-up is optional elsewhere in the line-up. The Navigation System Professional (standard on M Sport) now has large tile-like icons, the Digital Cockpit is optional and the aforementioned WiFi hotspot comes with an inductive charging tray for phones. There are loads of detail changes to the 4 Series cabin, plus even more leather and trim panel material and colour options than before. Likewise, buyers have new alloy wheels and paint colours to choose from.
Right, what about the chassis?
BMW says it has stiffened up the suspension of the 4 Series Coupe and Gran Coupe 'without compromising on their impressive ride comfort' thanks to new damping technology - and the steering is tweaked. The 4 Series Convertible's suspension is unchanged, but it appears to get revised steering.
And is the range as wide as ever?
It certainly is, though each body style has its own combination of trim levels and engines. In general, trim levels are SE, Sport and M Sport, while diesel models are designated 420d, 430d and 435d, while the petrol alternatives are called 420i, 430i, 440i and the M4, obviously. Most engines can be paired with xDrive four-wheel drive. The order books open on 19 January and on-the-road prices start at £32,525
Shane O' Donoghue - 16 Jan 2017