BMW’s more design-oriented companion lineup to the popular 3-Series sedan and wagon has been refreshed for the 2018 model year. The 4-Series lineup of coupes, convertibles, and a particularly stylish sedan gain the new 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder turbo engines that hit the 3-Series range last year.
The 4-Series has also been treated to a mild nip and tuck inside and out, although it’ll take a true brand devotee to spot the differences. Perhaps more important to enthusiasts, the lineup has seen some mild suspension and steering changes designed to improve its handling and ride quality.
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Last year’s 428i and 435i versions of each body have been discarded in favor of new 430i and 440i models. Spurring the change in nomenclature is a switch to more powerful engines. The 430i is now rated at 248 horsepower, while the 440i jumps from 300 to 320 hp. A choice of rear- or all-wheel drive continues.
All models but the coupe come standard with an 8-speed automatic; the two-door hardtops feature a 6-speed manual or the automatic.
Underneath, BMW says it has tweaked the suspension setup on all variants to improve damping characteristics and that it will continue to offer an M Sport setup and an adaptive M-branded suspension as extra-cost options. Additionally, the cars’ electric power steering system has been revitalized for 2018.
New 18- and 19-inch alloy wheels are available, as are two signature colors—Snapper Rocks Blue and Sunset Orange.
Looking the part
Styling differences between the 2017 and 2018 are subtle, but bi-LED headlamps have been made standard up front on all variants for the new year. Adaptive LED headlamps that swivel with the steering wheel are optional. There are greater differences at the rear, where the cars now boast a different bumper and diffuser design as well as revamped tail lamp arrangements.
Inside, BMW has added glossy black plastic to the cars’ center consoles. A sports steering wheel is now standard and it is wrapped in a higher grade of leather than before. BMW has also added a few new interior color schemes to the car’s optional equipment list.
On the tech front, BMW has updated the cars to its latest iDrive infotainment and navigation system and it has fitted wireless charging as an option.
BMW says the 4-Series line will hit dealers in March.