The Base 2021 BMW 4 Series Actually Looks Good

I have to admit, I rolled in here ready to walk all over the new, objectively-giant 2021 BMW 4 Series kidney grille. But you know what, it’s not so bad!

Many of you will think that BMW has jumped the shark. I will admit, the spy photos were alarming. But I almost think they helped me be prepared for this moment, and with all the other nightmarish shit going on out there, big kidneys on a fun car isn’t such a hard thing to swallow. Plus, it’s actually kind of striking in white, which is a hard colour to be striking it.

We weren’t sure BMW would ever go near a hood-to-splitter kidney grille after the gut-wrenching public reaction to the 2011 and 2015 BMW Hommage concepts. (The later Hommage concepts got rid of the ugly grille — wonder why!) But here we are.

The new 4 Series, which is still just the renamed version of the 3 Series (two-door) coupe, does not care about your opinion. This is BMW canon now. We have to live with it, so I’m going to do my best to move on from here.

As expected, the new 4 debuts with just about identical specs and options to the 3 Series introduced a couple of years ago. That means the 430i and 430i xDrive get a 255 horsepower 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder with 133 kg-ft of torque, and the M440i xDrive Coupe gets the 382 HP 3.0-litre turbo inline-six with 167 kg-ft of torque.

Just like with the new 3 Series, the M-tuned 4 Series gets quite the boost in power over the outgoing car, at over 60 HP and nearly 18 kg-ft, thanks in part to a new 48-volt mild-hybrid system that can recoup power under braking to boost the drivetrain or help power the car’s electrical systems. It also gets a special M Sport differential over the new 430i.

Both cars are only available with an 8-speed automatic, will get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto standard (BMW learned its lesson), and comes with this list of amazing paint colour options:

  • Alpine White (standard)
  • Jet Black (standard, 430i and 430i xDrive only)
  • Black Sapphire Metallic
  • Mineral White Metallic
  • Sunset Orange Metallic (430i and 430i xDrive only)
  • Bluestone Metallic (430i and 430i xDrive only)
  • Portimao Blue Metallic (new)
  • San Remo Green Metallic (new, from 11/20 production)
  • Arctic Race Blue Metallic (new)
  • Individual Dravit Grey Metallic (M440i xDrive only)
  • Individual Tanzanite II Blue Metallic (M440i xDrive only)

Pricing for the 430i Coupe starts at $US46,595 ($67,698) including destination, with $US2,000 ($2,906) on top if you want xDrive. The M440i xDrive starts at $US59,495 ($86,440).

But god damn does it kind of look like they mounted a spare wheel on the front. Why do I like this?