$35,090 - $66,424

2018 BMW 4-Series Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2018 BMW 4-Series was new.


Performance: 8.8

The 2018 BMW 4 Series has three available powertrains that all deliver respectable (or better) power and acceleration. The power isn’t wasted, either, as the 4 Series has agile handling and sharp steering. It also rides smoothly over most road surfaces.

  • "Overall though, the 440i Coupe feels taut and pretty keen to indulge a bit of hard driving. The balance is much more conservative than the slightly wild M4, but there's always the sense that if understeer does build you're well-armed to snap the car back into line. Maybe even tip the balance the other way with a bit more throttle. Or you can just throttle back altogether and enjoy the decent ride quality, smooth drivetrain, and the quality of the cabin. Okay, it doesn't feel as solidly hewn as an Audi, nor as special as the C-Class coupe, but it's still a very nice place to spend some time." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "The new 2.0-liter 4-cylinder turbo and 3.0-liter 6-cylinder turbo boast more power and torque, and come with new nomenclature; BMW 4 Series coupes, convertibles and Gran Coupe 4-door models with the 4-cylinder are now known as 430i, while the 6-cylinder models are 440i. … Whether you want rear- or all-wheel drive, or the fire-breathing M4, the 4 Series blends performance and refinement with its $40,000-plus starting price." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)
  • "It also delivers the same superior driver engagement we've come to expect from BMW sport sedans." -- Edmunds (2016)

Acceleration and Power

The BMW 430i features a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that generates 248 horsepower. This engine has ample power for daily driving, but you can step up in trim if you want more power.

The 440i is equipped with a turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine that produces 320 horsepower. This engine delivers better power and acceleration than the base engine. Most drivers don’t need the extra juice this engine provides, but it does make the 4 Series more fun to drive.

The 430i gets an EPA-estimated 24 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway, which are good ratings for the class. The 440i gets slightly worse ratings, earning 21 mpg in the city and 32 mpg on the highway.

An eight-speed automatic and a six-speed manual transmission are available, though the manual is only available in coupe models. Both shift smoothly and pair well with the engines.

The high-performance BMW M4 features a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine that generates 425 horsepower. An optional performance package raises that to 444 horsepower. A six-speed manual transmission is standard and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission is available. According to BMW, the M4 will zip from zero to 60 mph in 4.1 seconds and has a top speed of 155 mph.

  • "The engine really is a sweet thing, too. The test cars are fitted with the 8-speed automatic gearbox, which is quick and smooth but doesn't have that instant pop of a really good dual clutch unit." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "The Gran Coupe offers plenty of power and eager throttle response, and its 2.0-liter turbo-four sounds great. The responsive automatic transmission also has a launch mode. The 430i's zero-to-60-mph time should prove competitive with rivals." -- Edmunds
  • "Base 430i models use BMW's 248-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder. It's one of our favorite 4-cylinder engines and in truth will satisfy the majority of drivers. Those craving even more punch can opt for 440i models with the 320-horsepower turbocharged 6-cylinder. If you're really maniacal about power, there's the 2018 BMW M4, a beast that gets its own review." -- Kelley Blue Book

Handling and Braking

The 4 Series comes standard with rear-wheel drive; all-wheel drive is available. The ride is smooth even over road imperfections, and this BMW handles better than many other luxury small cars. It is well-balanced and remains planted around turns. There are four driving modes (Eco Pro, Comfort, Sport, and Sport+) that change driving dynamics to suit your preferences. The brakes are sturdy and provide good stopping power.

  • "The 2018 4 Series takes the agility, acceleration and balance of the 3 Series and strengthens it with a wider stance and lower center of gravity. It makes the 2-door versions of the 4 Series the perfect partner for enthusiasts who still relish the act of driving, and who won't mind the trade-offs of increased road noise and a stiffer ride. The Gran Coupe, however, is aimed at the grand touring crowd, and it does a grand job." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Ride quality did not seem to suffer on the precious few bumps traversed in the more tightly suspended coupe, and both cars remained remarkably even-keeled under such cornering grip as could be mustered in these conditions. Steering effort and response seemed quite appropriate for the segment, but there wasn't much to feel coming up from the greasy road surface and gummy tires." -- Motor Trend
  • "When the road bends, the 4 Series is marvelously balanced, immediately instilling driver confidence with its firmly planted feel. The steering is very precise, though it lacks the detailed feedback that used to set BMW apart. Some might find the ride quality overly firm, but the Track Handling package's electronically adjustable adaptive suspension nearly erases road imperfections while further boosting the car's stability." -- Edmunds (2017)

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