Whether it’s a leak or an official reveal, pictures of BMW’s new 4 Series Coupé are now out in the open, marking the first time BMW has separated the 4-door and 2-door versions of its best-seller with a different model name.
The new BMW 4 Series Coupé F32 will premiere at the Detroit NAIAS in January, before going on sale in the Spring. As before it will share engines and drivetrains with the 3 Series saloon and touring models, most likely starting with the 161bhp 420d.
An M4 version (why does that sound like the motorway..?), will be available in early 2014, following introduction of the turbocharged straight-six M3 saloon towards the end of 2013.
The model shown in these photos is unclear, since it’s one of BMW’s notorious ‘Concepts’, but it clearly shows a sleeker and more sporting interpretation of BMW’s mid-sized coupe than was previously available as a 3 Series model.
“The 4 Series doesn’t just mark the start of a new cycle; it marks the start of a model with its own individual character and a stand-alone design,” says BMW’s press release. “The latest addition to BMW’s nomenclature follows the tradition of the larger 6 Series and 8 Series Coupés, the “4” will stand for greater sportiness, greater exclusivity and even clearer differentiation from the BMW 3 Series range.”
The dimensions of the new 4 Series Coupé convey a more dynamic attitude than the 3 Series, even when standing still. At 2,810 mm the wheelbase is 50 millimetres longer than that of the outgoing 3 Series Coupé, while 45 mm has been added to the front track (1,545 mm) and 80 mm to the rear track (1,593 mm). The 4 Series Coupé is also 44 mm broader than its predecessor (1,826 mm wide), 16 mm lower (1,362 mm) and also slightly longer (4,641 mm) overall.
The new design is both elegant and more assertive looking than the model it replaces, with taught lines extending to all four corners of the car. The front and rear overhangs are shorter and the rear wheel arches now mark the widest point of the car – presenting a much wider and lower looking profile.
Precise contours and multifaceted surfaces echo the current 6 Series, while the characteristic Hoffmeister-kink extends further towards the rear of the coupe silhouette, drawing attention to the wide track and muscular wheel arches.
One of the newest innovations on the 4 Series Coupé is the ‘Aero Curtain’. This is an EfficientDynamics feature which channels the incoming air around the outside of the wheels, ensuring the airflow “hugs” the wheel arches and reducing fuel consumption as a consequence.
Exclusive 20-inch light-alloy wheels, with three-dimensional multi-spoke design, complete the look, lending the Concept 4 Series Coupé a strong sense of sporting character.
Engines and drivetrains have yet to be confirmed (given that this is still only a concept), but we’d expect it to include the popular 420d, plus all the higher-performance powerplants including 435i, 435d (or will that be 440d) and M4 in 2014.
We’ll bring you further details in the weeks leading up to the show, including our initial thoughts on what this means for the BMW marque.