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Future models - BMW - 4 Series - Gran Coupe

BMW reveals 4 Series Gran Coupe

Range expansion: BMW's 4 Series Gran Coupe will launch in Australia in mid-2014.

Another niche model for BMW as 4 Series Gran Coupe hatchback premieres

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BMW logo3 Feb 2014

By MIKE COSTELLO

BMW this week revealed the third member of its 4 Series model line, the Gran Coupe, which despite the name is actually a five-door hatchback rival for Audi’s A5 Sportback.

The newest 4 Series family member is similar in style to the 6 Series Gran Coupe, only smaller and featuring a more cargo-friendly liftback rather than a conventional boot. In this way it is similar to the recently launched 3 Series Gran Turismo, but its sportier styling will help it stand apart.

BMW’s mid-sized portfolio now features the 3 Series sedan, traditional Touring wagon and GT, plus the 4 Series coupe, convertible and now the Gran Coupe.

The Bavarian brand’s newest niche offering will launch in Australia around July this year. If BMW translates its strategy of pricing the 6 Series Gran Coupe slightly above the regular two-door version, expect the 4 Series Gran Coupe range to kick off around $75,000.

Like the A5, the 4 Series Gran Coupe features four frameless windows and a coupe-like raked roofline. High-end versions come with a sensor triggered by a foot to open the hatchback, like Ford’s Kuga.

Despite the more load-friendly design, the Gran Coupe shares its dimensions (4638mm long on a 2810mm wheelbase) with the regular coupe, although the roof is 12mm higher and 112mm longer.

BMW’s signature 50:50 weight distribution remains, while the heavier Gran Coupe gets its own unique suspension and damper tune. The coupe-like lines give an aerodynamic rating of .27Cd, which falls short of the Mercedes-Benz CLA’s .23Cd figure.

Boot volume is 480 litres, 35L more than the coupe but 40L less than the 3 Series GT, and the loading area is also wider. The rear row of seats folds 40:20:40 yielding a maximum volume when folded flat of 1300L.

Engine options in Australia are expected to mirror the 4 Series coupe, pointing to a pair of 2.0-litre turbo-petrols – the135kW/270Nm 420i and 180kW/350Nm 428i – the 225kW/400Nm straight-six 435i, and a 135kW/380Nm 420d 2.0-litre diesel variant. The launch timing might be staggered.

A 430d diesel will arrive in Europe later this year, as will a selection of xDrive all-wheel-drives including a monstrous 230kW/630Nm 635d, but neither appears likely to go on-sale here.

Power on our versions will be sent to the rear wheels via a standard eight-speed automatic transmission. Fuel consumption for the base diesel is a claimed 4.7 litres per 100km on the combined cycle, while the thirstiest 435i still manages 8.3L/100km.

In time, expect to see a hardcore M4 version using BMW’s new 317kW/550Nm 3.0-litre twin-turbo six-cylinder engine.

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