Friday, September 27, 2013
First Impressions - 2014 BMW M4
It's a bittersweet day M fans.
Rejoice for with the new F30 BMW 3 Series comes the promise of a M-ified version, only this time around (and for the rest of eternity) the vaunted M3 badge will only apply to the 4 door car. That's right. The arrival of the BMW 4 Series (no longer the 3 Series coupe) also means that the badge 'M4' will be affixed to the super coupe from BMW's M division.
Let me explain. Exhibit A: Audi. Rather than make an A4 2 door (like they did with the A4 convertible...sorta), they branched off the 2 door version into the A5 (and with it, the S5 and hyper RS5) even though both cars share the same chassis. This has worked wonders for Audi and BMW is keen to follow suit. But is that such a bad thing though? The 3 Series Coupe has always been the stylish brother of the 3 Series lineup (which included 4 door and 5 door wagon variants) so in BMW's think tank, it made sense to branch off the 2 door into it's own line, sort of like the 6 Series is essentially a more stylish 2 door version of the 5 Series. Besides, with the arrival of new 3 Series variants like the Gran Turismo (see 5 Series GT for ugly reference) it was probably for the best.
Expect the production M4 and its four door companion to be unveiled in early 2014 with sales a few months after at a price starting in the $60k range. Like previous models, a convertible variant will follow (and here's hoping North America gets a wagon). With Audi RS and Mercedes AMG cranking out ever higher performance vehicles, the pressure is on BMW to deliver a car that will meet the Germans head on (and head off the new kid Cadillac ATS-V) keep the M badge as the standard bearer of the segment. Though calling the new car the M4 will take some getting used to, the performance being previewed should encourage M enthusiasts to accept the new car. And if the the new name still bothers you, there will always be an M3 available on the next stand. If you're willing to accept two more doors that is.
Images courtesy of World Car Fans