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2017 BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe: New Car Review

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author photo by Autotrader May 2017

The 2017 BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe is the just-right car for anyone who feels the 3 Series sedan is visually too bland and the regular 4 Series insufficiently practical. Basically, the 4 Series Gran Coupe is like a 3 Series sedan with a sleeker rear roofline and a hatchback trunk. That rakish roof means less headroom than a 3 Series offers, yet the Gran Coupe costs more. Such is the price of "4-door coupe" styling.

However, this is no time to be griping about nomenclature or quibbling about money. We have an excellent car to celebrate. A close inspection reveals some intriguing facts. For example, the Gran Coupe shares the 2-door 4 Series coupe's length, width and wheelbase (although the roof is 0.5 of an inch higher). Against the coupe, it provides an extra pair of doors without having to compromise.

Compared to the sedan, the Gran Coupe has an advantage with its handy hatchback, including fold-down rear seats that open up some serious cargo space. And next to the oddly proportioned 3 Series Gran Turismo hatchback, the Gran Coupe is far sleeker. This car has something for almost everyone.

What's New for 2017?

New engines bring name changes as well as more power. The former 240-horsepower 428i becomes the 248-hp 430i, and the erstwhile 300-hp 435i is now the 320-hp 440i. The optional navigation system has been updated, while wireless smartphone charging and Wi-Fi are now options. The 440i model has nicer (Nappa) leather for its steering wheel.

What We Like

Strong and efficient engines; excellent interior materials; cutting-edge cabin technology; sporty driving feel; versatile hatchback trunk

What We Don't

Costs more than a 3 Series; less rear headroom than a 3 Series

How Much?


Fuel Economy

The 430i Gran Coupe uses a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine that develops 248 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque.

An 8-speed automatic is the sole transmission.

When driving the rear wheels only, this engine is rated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at 23 miles per gallon in the city, 34 mpg on the highway and 27 mpg in combined driving.

BMW's optional xDrive all-wheel-drive system changes these figures to 23 mpg city/33 mpg hwy/26 mpg combined.

The 440i Gran Coupe -- also available as a rear-drive model or with all-wheel drive -- has a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine generating 320 hp and 330 lb-ft of torque.

The 8-speed automatic is again standard, and the EPA estimates fuel consumption at 21 mpg city/32 mpg hwy/25 mpg combined with rear-wheel drive, or 21 mpg city/31 mpg hwy/25 mpg combined with all-wheel drive.

Standard Features & Options

The 2017 BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe is a 5-seater that comes in 430i or 440i versions. All-wheel drive is a $2,000 option.

The 430i ($42,645) comes standard with 18-inch wheels, adaptive xenon headlights, fog lights, a sunroof, a power hatchback, steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, auto-dimming mirrors, automatic wipers, Driving Dynamics Control (offering four settings for throttle sensitivity and steering effort), 8-way power-adjustable front seats, leatherette upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control, Bluetooth, iPod/USB/auxiliary connectivity, a 9-speaker audio system with HD Radio, and BMW's iDrive infotainment system with a 6.5-in screen.

The 440i ($48,995) adds the 6-cylinder engine, plus keyless entry/ignition, a Nappa leather-wrapped steering wheel, a hands-free powered tailgate and a Harman Kardon audio system with satellite radio.

Either trim level can be customized with options packages. The Luxury and M Sport add styling flourishes, special wheels and upgraded interior decor. The M Sport also includes an adaptive sport-tuned suspension and a sport steering wheel.

The Premium package includes keyless entry/start, leather upholstery, satellite radio and power lumbar support for the front seats. The Cold Weather package contributes a heated steering wheel, along with heated seats front and rear and headlight washers.

The Technology package adds a widescreen iDrive display, an upgraded gauge cluster, navigation, smartphone app integration, wireless smartphone charging, Wi-Fi, a touchpad controller and a full-color head-up display. The Track Handling package upgrades the brakes, adds special 18-in alloy wheels (or 19-in alloys) and brings an adaptive suspension plus a variable-ratio sport steering system.

Additional options include a leather-covered dashboard (440i only), adaptive LED headlights, a side-/top-view camera system and a self-parking function for parallel spaces.

Trunk space measures 17 cu ft. behind the rear seats (which is 4 cu ft. more than the 3 Series sedan's trunk). Folding those seats down results in an impressive 45.9 cu ft., just 7 cu ft. away from the 3 Series wagon.


The 4 Series Gran Coupe comes standard with stability control, 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (with automatic collision preparation) and eight airbags (front, front-side, front-knee and full-length side-curtain). Whenever the wipers are activated, so is a drying function for the brake discs.

The optional Driver Assistance Plus package includes front and rear parking sensors, a 360-degree parking camera system, blind spot monitoring, lane-departure warning and a frontal-collision warning system with low-speed automatic braking.

This vehicle has not been crash-tested by any agencies in the United States.

Behind the Wheel

From a driver's perspective, the 4 Series Gran Coupe is similar to the 3 Series. But the seating position is a little lower, imparting a slightly sportier feel. As usual, the gauges are crisp and understated, with BMW's trademark red illumination casting a soothing glow at night. An attractive high-resolution information display between the speedometer and tachometer is included with the Technology package.

This package also adds a beautiful 8.8-in central display that's a must-have for those who demand the latest gadgets. And the iDrive controller interface (augmented by a touchpad with the larger display) has improved by leaps and bounds in recent years.

The standard front seats provide plenty of adjustability, although their mediocre lateral support makes the optional sport seats an obvious upgrade for enthusiasts. Rear accommodation is one of the few weak spots. The stylish rear roofline means taller passengers may rub their heads on the ceiling. Still, there's more people-carrying capability than in the regular 4 Series coupe.

The 4 Series Gran Coupe delivers a master class in driving dynamics. The suspension is never stiff (even in optional sport-tuned form), but provides the kind of control found in a sports car, with quick reflexes and minimal body roll. Remarkably, the ride around town remains quiet and supple.

The 440i's turbocharged inline-6 is stunningly quick, yet the 430i's 4-cylinder engine isn't far behind, while being more affordable and more fuel efficient. Either way, the shifts from the 8-speed automatic are fast and slick. Or you can change gears yourself using the steering-wheel-mounted shift paddles. Chances are you'll want to do that more and more.

Other Cars to Consider

2018 Audi A5/S5 Sportback -- Based on the fresh generation of A4, this is another premium compact 4-door with a hatchback. It might also be argued that it looks beautiful.

2017 Lexus IS -- The current IS has bold looks that have worn well. Its sharp handling and rich interior make it a natural Gran Coupe competitor.

2017 Mercedes-Benz C-Class -- The C-Class is stylish enough to make shoppers interested in the 4 Series Gran Coupe think twice, and the 362-hp C43 AMG model has plenty of performance.

Used BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe -- Derived from the super-luxurious 6 Series. There are some appealing prices via BMW's certified pre-owned (CPO) program.

Autotrader's Advice

A facelifted version is scheduled for 2018. In the meantime, and no doubt in the future, the 440i appears to be the dream model. Make sure the extra safety features are among your main options choices.

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2017 BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe: New Car Review - Autotrader