An open car is luxury, a car for special occasions, for a drive into the sunset or to your favorite café. When the metal folding roof came up, the cabriolet repositioned itself as a vehicle for the whole year. But this characteristic was due to the elegance - and the trunk volume. Fabric tops have long been suitable for year-round use; and BMW is taking the lead with the 4 Series: The new 4 Series Cabriolet, like its predecessor generations, has a soft top again, which still appeared as a 3 Series.
Not only the line benefits from the new hood, which is not only available in black, but also with a metallic shimmer. It is also 40 percent lighter than the retractable roof of the previous model. It can be opened or closed up to speeds of 50 km / h in 18 seconds, and the trunk grows by an impressive 80 to 300 liters.
Because the BMW 6 Series has become the 8 Series, the 4 Series can expand: It has a longer wheelbase and has grown in all dimensions. The interior comes directly from the 3 Series, the rear seats should also offer enough space for longer journeys. The 4 Series has a lower center of gravity than the 3 Series, its steering is designed for high agility, and thus the driving characteristics of the open version should come close to the extraordinary dynamic qualities of the 4 Series Coupé despite the additional weight.
All six-cylinders come with 48 volt hybridization
The BMW 4 Series Convertible comes with a wide range of four- and six-cylinder engines that work on the diesel or gasoline principle. Among the gasoline engines, based on the four-cylinder B46, the price list includes the 420i with 184 hp (135 kW) and the 430i with 258 hp (190 kW); above that is the M 440i with 374 hp (275 kW) strong B58 in-line six-cylinder. The diesel range includes the 190 hp (140 kW) B47 four-cylinder in the 420d and the 3,0-liter in-line six-cylinder B57, which already has 430 hp (286 kW) in the 210d and an impressive 440 hp (340 kW) in the M 250d perform. With the exception of the four-cylinder petrol engines, all models have 48-volt hybridization.
Depending on the engine, the BMW 4 Series Convertible is available with rear or all-wheel drive; however, an eight-stage automatic converter from ZF is mandatory for all of the variants mentioned. Later there will also be an M4 Cabriolet, possibly not only with 510 hp and automatic transmission, but - like the Coupé - also with 480 hp and six-speed manual transmission. The 4 Series Convertible is equipped with the latest connectivity and infotainment systems from BMW. The dynamic settings can be modified in many ways, the navigation provides traffic information in real time.
The new convertible faces the competition
Despite its elegant roof shape, the BMW 4 Series Cabriolet is stylistically a provocation: It is equipped with the same vertically oriented double kidney grille that was used for the coupé on social media
caused considerable commotion. In reality, the new design is not as dominant as it does in the photos: after all, the viewer usually looks down at the bonnet instead of kneeling in front of it. Perhaps the fans can be reconciled with the classic soft top by the time they get used to it.
The BMW 4 Series Cabriolet competes on the market with the corresponding variants of the Audi A5 and Mercedes-Benz C and E-Class. Among them, he now presents himself as the newest competitor. (Jens Meiners / ampnet / deg)