The BMW 3 Series today is regarded as the car to beat in the compact luxury segment. These days, we are more familiar with the 3 Series in its sedan bodystyle, but when the model lineage started back in the mid-1970s as a successor to the legendary BMW 2002, the original E21 3 Series was available only in two-door guises.
It wasn’t until the second-generation E30’s arrival that the world was first introduced to the concept of a four-door 3 Series, but as the years progressed, the sedan and touring variants became the bread and butter body styles of the range whilst the coupe and convertible became niche models catering to sportier demands.
BMW’s newly-introduced practice of segregating its passenger car model naming nomenclature to have odd numbers designate mainstream cars and even numbers designate sportier derivatives has seen the 3 Series family separated from its origins as a two-door model. Taking the mantle vacated by the now discontinued 3 Series Coupe is the all-new 4 Series Coupe that was launched only recently in Malaysia.
Known as the F32 in BMW’s inner circles, the all-new 4 Series Coupe premieres in Malaysia with a choice of two petrol-powered engines, the increasingly familiar 2.0-litre N20 engine powering the 428i Coupe, and the ridiculously powerful 3.0-litre N55 in the 435i. Both engines are turbocharged and fitted with ZF’s longitudinal 8-speed automatic transmission as standard.
Pushing out an impressive 245hp and 350Nm from its four-cylinder mill, the 428i sprints from rest to 100kph in a mere 5.8 seconds whilst returning a notable fuel consumption rate of 6.4 l/100km and carbon dioxide emissions at 149 g/km in the European combined cycle. The 435i, with 306hp and 400Nm on tap from its award-winning straight-six engine, completes the century sprint in 5.1 seconds whilst consuming fuel at 7.4 l/100km and producing CO2 at 172 g/km. Both models have a capped top speed of 250kph.
Under BMW’s EfficientDynamics umbrella of technologies, the all-new 4 Series Coupe is blessed with a number of fuel-saving related innovations. In Eco Pro driving mode, a new sailing function de-couples the engine and drive train that allows the car to coast free-wheel at speeds between 50 and 160kph. This feature is complemented by the Route-Ahead Assistant, which uses data from the car’s integrated GPS system, recognizing city, town and village boundaries, as well as speed restrictions along the route to provide drivers with tips on reducing the throttle in advance.
Priced at RM358,800 before insurance, the 428i Coupe comes standard with BMW’s Sport Line trim that comes with touches such as high-gloss black dashboard with highlight trim finishers of Coral Red matt and a sports leather steering wheel. It can be optionally enhanced by BMW’s M Sport package at a cost of RM30,000, which adds not only cosmetic enhancements, but also adaptive electronic dampers. The regular 428i gets a stiffer, but non-adjustable M Sport suspension. The M Sport package is standard offering in the 435i, which is priced at RM525,800 under the same terms.
Pictures: Official BMW release.