The 2018 BMW 4 Series can be had as a coupe, a retractable-hardtop convertible, or 4-door liftback called the Gran Coupe. The first two, with their 2-door/4-passenger configurations, prioritize sportiness, while the 5-passenger Gran Coupe adds a surprising dose of practicality thanks to its large rear cargo bay. All have impressive driving dynamics and premium amenities.
You'll Like The 2018 BMW 4 Series If...
The 4 Series coupe and convertible are essentially 2-door versions of the BMW 3 Series. If you want the well-regarded driving dynamics of that sedan in a sleeker package or with a retractable-hardtop roof, the 4 Series is it. As for the 4-door Gran Coupe, it blends fine handling, sharp looks and strong practicality.
You May Not Like The 2018 BMW 4 Series If...
Impressive as the 4 Series lineup is, these luxury-performance coupes aren't the only game in town. You may prefer the tech advances of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe and new Audi A5, or the fresh and fluid lines of the Lexus RC and Infiniti Q60.
For 2018, the BMW 4 Series receives new front and rear exterior tweaks, stiffer suspension and upgraded steering, new exterior colors and four new rim choices. Adaptive full LED headlights are now available, while interior mods include a new steering-wheel rim and freshened digital interface for models with navigation.
The BMW 4 Series coupe and convertible models have four seats, but only the front two are suitable for adults for longer durations. The rear seats are tight on leg- and headroom (convertible notwithstanding), and it's not particularly easy to get back there in hardtop models. The Gran Coupe's rear doors and elongated roof do improve access. In all models it's the one behind the steering wheel who's truly pampered, with a driver-focused cockpit, easy-to-reach controls and an improved iDrive infotainment system. Cargo space is fine in the coupes, but the Gran Coupe has more than 45 cubic feet with rear seats folded.
The BMW 4 Series has been updated for 2018, but the revisions are minor: a restyled nose, larger central air intake, and elongated design of the rear light clusters. Not surprisingly, the 4 Series coupe and convertible look the most alike. With its hardtop roof up, the convertible essentially is a 4 Series coupe. It's the 2018 4 Series Gran Coupe that stands out. Though the same length as its siblings, the Gran Coupe can appear longer with its four doors and elongated roof. Instead of a trunk, the Gran Coupe has a rear hatch for easy loading and unloading of gear.
The 2018 4 Series takes the agility, acceleration and balance of the 3 Series and strengthens it with a wider stance and lower center of gravity. It makes the 2-door versions of the 4 Series the perfect partner for enthusiasts who still relish the act of driving, and who won't mind the trade-offs of increased road noise and a stiffer ride. The Gran Coupe, however, is aimed at the grand touring crowd, and it does a grand job. We love its blend of lively yet smooth road manners and appreciable space for cargo and passengers. Base 430i models use BMW's 248-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder. It's one of our favorite 4-cylinder engines and in truth will satisfy the majority of drivers. Those craving even more punch can opt for 440i models with the 320-horsepower turbocharged 6-cylinder. If you're really maniacal about power, there's the 2018 BMW M4, a beast that gets its own review.
The 2018 BMW 4 Series has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting at $43,195 for a base 430i Gran Coupe, which is actually the least expensive model in the lineup. A base coupe starts at $200 more than that, while the hardtop convertible is appreciably more with a starting price of $51,545. Opting for a 6-cylinder 440i model bumps those prices by around $6,000-$7,000, and packages can add several thousand more to the bottom line. At these prices, the BMW 4 Series is still in line with other luxury coupes and convertibles like the Audi A5, Mercedes-Benz C-Class and Lexus RC, while the Infiniti Q60 and Cadillac ATS coupe begin a few thousand lower. Before buying, check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying. We expect the 2018 4 Series' resale value to be about average, trailing that of the Lexus RC.
Base 430i versions of the 2018 BMW 4 Series Coupe, Gran Coupe and Convertible may look different, but all have similar standard equipment. There are 10-way-power front seats, LED headlights, automatic climate control, and on the Coupe and Gran Coupe, a moonroof; the Gran Coupe also gets a power tailgate. Standard infotainment is a 9-speaker AM/FM/CD/HD Radio system with USB audio input, Bluetooth streaming and 6.5-inch display (unfortunately, a rearview camera still costs extra). The 440i offers the stronger 6-cylinder engine. New BMWs come with Ultimate Care, which includes three years/36,000 miles of complimentary maintenance and four years/unlimited miles of roadside assistance.
In true German luxury-car fashion, there's a plethora of ways to upgrade and personalize your 4 Series. You can upgrade to a 16-speaker/600-watt harman/kardon sound system, a hands-free trunk that opens when you wave your foot under the bumper, and leather upholstery to replace the synthetic SensaTec material. Most options are bundled into packages, like the Technology Package that includes navigation and dedicated apps. A Driver Assistance package adds the blind-spot monitoring and Active Driving Assistant with lane-departure warning, collision-mitigation automatic braking and pedestrian detection. Also available are wireless charging for compatible smartphones and a Wi-Fi hotspot.
2.0-LITER TURBOCHARGED 4-CYLINDER ENGINE
We said that the old base-level engine in the 4 Series was good enough that there was little reason to shell out for the 6-cylinder variant. That's truer still with this latest engine, which arrived last year. It's more powerful, and at up to 34 mpg, impressively efficient.
The BMW 4 Series convertible doesn't force you to choose between a classic coupe or open-top convertible, thanks to its power-operated retractable hardtop. Top up, it's a sharp coupe with the classic BMW "Hofmeister kink" at the rear window; top down you have open-air enjoyment for yourself and three passengers.
Under the Hood
Two engines are available in the 2018 BMW 4 Series. Base 430i models use a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder good for 248 horsepower, while the more powerful 440i models pack a 3.0-liter turbocharged 6-cylinder that makes 320 horsepower. Rear-wheel drive (RWD) is the standard setup, and BMW's xDrive all-wheel drive (AWD) is optional. Most models are mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission that is nearly flawless. For the "save-the-manuals" crowd, a stick shift is still available in the 430i coupe, 440i coupe and 440i xDrive coupe. Auto start/stop is standard on the 430i and 440i models; if you don't like the jarring restarts you can shut it off. Also note these premium engines require premium gasoline.
2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 (430i)
248 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
258 lb-ft of torque @ 1,450-4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/33 mpg (coupe, manual, RWD); 24/34 mpg (coupe, convertible, Gran Coupe, automatic, RWD), 23/33 mpg (coupe, Gran Coupe, AWD), 22/32 mpg (convertible, AWD)
3.0-liter turbocharged inline-6 (440i)
320 horsepower @ 5,500 rpm
330 lb-ft of torque @ 1,380-5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/29 mpg (manual coupe RWD & AWD), 21/32 mpg (coupe, Gran Coupe, automatic, RWD), 21/31 mpg (coupe, Gran Coupe, AWD), 21/29 mpg (convertible, RWD), 20/29 mpg (convertible, AWD)
The 2018 BMW 4 Series is available in three forms: a coupe, a retractable-hardtop convertible, and a 4-door liftback called the Gran Coupe. The first two, with their 2-door/4-passenger configurations, prioritize sportiness, while the 5-passenger Gran Coupe adds a surprising dose of practicality thanks to its large rear cargo bay. All are offered with turbocharged 4- or 6-cylinder engines and rear- or all-wheel-drive (RWD, AWD). The high-performance M4 (reviewed separately), meanwhile, comes in coupe or convertible form. In true BMW fashion, a manual transmission is still offered, which sets the 4 Series apart from rivals like the Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe, Infiniti Q60 and Lexus RC (a stick still exists in the Audi A5 and Cadillac ATS coupe). Minor updates keep the 4 Series fresh for 2018.