New BMW 4-series cabriolet revealed; prices start at £36,675, goes on sale in March
Darren Moss
20 November 2013

The BMW 4-series cabriolet has been revealed in full at its LA motor show debut.

BMW's new convertible, which is based on the 4-series coupé, features a refined folding metal hardtop and is offered with a range of engines. Prices start from £36,675 for the 420d SE, rising to £39,515 for the 418i SE and £44,970 for the 435i Luxury.

The only diesel model in the range, the 420d, is powered by a turbocharged common-rail 2.0-litre engine producing 181bhp and 280lb ft. BMW quotes 55mpg combined and CO2 emissions of 133g/km. The 420d can go from 0-62mph in 8.2 seconds and has a top speed of 146mph.

Next is the 428i, which is powered by a twin-turbocharged direct-injection 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine developing 241bhp and 258lb ft of torque. It's claimed to average 42mpg and emit 159g/km of CO2. It's faster to 62mph than the 420d, at 6.4 seconds, and has an electronically limited higher top speed of 155mph.

At the very top of the range sits the 435i, powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol engine producing 302bhp and 295lb ft of torque. It has the same electronically limited 155mph top speed as the 428i, but crucially is the fastest to 62mph - covering the sprint in just 5.6 seconds. It's also the least efficient engine in the range, emitting 190g/km of CO2 and returning 35mpg on a combined cycle.

All engines are available with either a six-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission. Regardless of transmission choice, the 4-series features a start/stop system.

The 4-series measures 4638mm long by 1825mm wide, with a height of 1384mm and a wheelbase of 2810mm. The 420d and 428i both have a kerbweight of 1755kg, some 300kg more than the coupé, while the performance-biased 435i weighs in at 1815kg. BMW claims an improved 50:50 weight distribution and "very stiff, precise steering".

Five equipment levels are available, starting with base-spec SE and including Sport, Luxury, Modern and M-Sport trims. Standard equipment on the 4-series cabriolet includes front and rear parking sensors, heated seats, DAB radio, dual-zone air conditioning and cruise control.

The BMW 4-series cabriolet will go on sale in March of next year.

A new M4, based on the Concept M4 coupé shown recently, is also expected to launch mid-2014 for around £60,000.

BMW's new 2-series has also recently been spotted testing, with the coupé expected to replace the current 1-series coupé early next year. A 2-series convertible will follow in 2015.

Read more 2013 LA motor show news.

Our Verdict

BMW 4 Series

The facelifted BMW 4 Series has improved on an already solid proposition but can it hold off the likes of the latest generation Audi A5 and Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupé?

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Comments
7

13 October 2013

I expect most potential buyers could stomach the additional cost over a fabric-roofed A5 Cabriolet (

13 October 2013

Either previous reports from Autocar were misleading or BMW always decided to stick with a folding metal roof rather go for a soft top. The roof doesn't look any better integrated, or refined, compared to its predecessor. And the added weight of a folding metal roof is astonishing too, 300kg!

13 October 2013
Lanehogger wrote:

...And the added weight of a folding metal roof is astonishing too, 300kg!

I'm guessing the added weight is also due to anti-flex body strengthening and not just the metal roof. That said, 300kg is a massive increase. Porsche Is able to keep the weights of its convertibles to less than 100kg over the coupe equivalents, all be it with cloth roofs. Why can't BMW?

14 October 2013
Lanehogger wrote:

The roof doesn't look any better integrated, or refined, compared to its predecessor.

Do you mean because you can see the breaks between the individual roof panels? Which I guess is unavoidable, especially on lighter colours. However, I'd say it's not really any different to the sight of the awkward ridges and bulges you get in fabric roofs. I'm just looking at a rear 3/4 picture of an A5 convertible and can clearly see 3 of the hoops pushing against the fabric, with the fabric itself a bit droopy in between. Which looks the least worse is debatable.

14 October 2013
twyford wrote:
Lanehogger wrote:

The roof doesn't look any better integrated, or refined, compared to its predecessor.

Do you mean because you can see the breaks between the individual roof panels? Which I guess is unavoidable, especially on lighter colours. However, I'd say it's not really any different to the sight of the awkward ridges and bulges you get in fabric roofs. I'm just looking at a rear 3/4 picture of an A5 convertible and can clearly see 3 of the hoops pushing against the fabric, with the fabric itself a bit droopy in between. Which looks the least worse is debatable.

More to do with the proportions of making a folding metal roof look like a proper tin-top model when the roof is up. There's more flexibility with a cloth roof's styling which makes a car looked better proportioned when the roof is up. I think metal roofs only look good when they're not used on 4 seater/saloon/hatch/coupe derived cars. The roof on the Z4 looks far much better, as does a Mercedes SL, SLK or a Ferrari California.

13 October 2013

As the BMW claimed curb weight for the 428 is 1545kg, the convertible adds 200kg, not 300.
The actual weight of both is likely to be 100-200kg higher than what BMW claims, so the 435 is probably going to be very close to 2000kg...
Audi is famous for being very "optimistic" with their weight claims, so weighs about the same as the 4.

14 October 2013

A ragtop would have made an already beautiful car astonishingly pretty - the vehicle looks so much better with the roof down.

In fact, the roof looks carried over from the previous model. To me, the folds/breaks on the roof on the 4 and 3 series look wider than on the Z4. I wonder if there is something in that?

Personally I never liked the roof on the previous 3 convertible but oddly, the folding hardtop on the Z4 never bothered me ( in fact we own a Z4).

Still, I cannot help but feel Vauxhall got it right with the Cascadia (or whatever it is called)

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