You can think of the BMW i4 quite simply as an all-electric take on the ever-popular 4 Series sedan, offering buyers all the premium features and exciting driving dynamics that BMW has become famous for in a silent, powerful battery-electric platform.
With that in mind, as a brand-new car, it’s worth asking just how good is the BMW i4, and how does it stack up as a reliable companion for daily commutes and weekend adventures considering its battery-electric powertrain? Let’s find out.
Starting Price: $99,900
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BMW i4 (eDRIVE40 M SPORT GRAN COUPE) Specifications
|Variant||eDRIVE40 M SPORT GRAN COUPE|
|Transmission||1 SP AUTOMATIC|
|Engine configuration||NOT APPLICABLE / 0 valves|
|Engine RPM||0 / 0|
|Fuel tank size||0.0|
|Fuel usage specs||0.0 / 0|
|ANCAP security rating||Unrated|
For more details and other variants, check BMW i4 car page.
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How Much Does It Cost?
The BMW i4 range is available in a two-variant lineup, with the entry-level i4 eDrive40 priced at $99,900, and the range-topping i4 M50 priced at $129,900.
Keep in mind that these prices are subject to change, and do not include on-road costs.
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What Features Does the BMW i4 Have?
The entry-level BMW i4 eDrive40 comes riding on 19-inch alloys, and receives an M Sport package, adaptive suspension, M sport brakes, leather upholstery with sports seats, LED headlights, Driving & Parking assistants, head-up display, automatic tailgate lift, ambient lighting, a 12.3-inch digital instrument display and a 14.9-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and DAB+ radio.
Upgrading to the i4 M50 adds a set of 19-inch M sport alloys with performance tyres, a performance-tune, M technology package and rear spoiler, BMW Laserlight headlights, xDrive all-wheel drive system, heated seats, panoramic sunroof and a Harman/Kardon surround sound system.
M Sport package
M Sport brakes
Leather upholstery with sports seats
Driving & Parking assistants
12.3-inch digital instrument cluster
14.9-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto
Performance tune & tyres (M50)
M Technology package (M50)
BMW Laserlight headlights (M50)
xDrive all-wheel drive system (M50)
Heated seats (M50)
Panoramic sunroof (M50)
Harman/Kardon sound system (M50)
BMW i4 Colours
The i4 range is available in Alpine White as a no-cost colour finish, while Mineral White, Sunset Orange, M Brooklyn Grey, M Portimao Blue and Black Sapphire are priced as $2,000 optional extras.
The BMW i4 is also available in Tanzanite Blue, Dravit Grey and Aventurine Red as a $3,850 extra, while Brilliant White, Frozen Pure Grey and Frozen Portimao Blue are priced at $6,700.
Is it Comfortable to Drive?
While it might be the first 4 Series to gain an electric powertrain, judging by the overall driving experience on offer in the i4 range, it certainly won’t be the last; this is an exciting slice of what driving in the future.
The entry-level i4 eDrive40 comes powered by a single electric motor producing 250kW of power and 430Nm of torque that sits over the rear axle, and translates to a healthy 0-100km/h sprint in 5.7 seconds.
Upgrading to the i4 M50 sees the addition of a second electric motor that brings the combined power output to an impressive 400kW of power and 795Nm of torque and offers a hugely impressive 0-100km/h sprint in 3.9 seconds.
Both variants are powered by an 84kWh lithium-ion battery pack that can be DC fast-charged up to 200kW.
The performance of the base model is impressive enough for every driver out there, while the M50 turns everything up to eleven and makes for a seriously engaging drive which is helped by the M-specific tune for the suspension that gives it serious cornering abilities.
Both variants gain an agile front axle that darts between corners with ease and offers the driver a heap of feedback, as we’ve come to expect from BMW’s creations while offering a super versatile platform for performance driving and supremely comfortable daily driving.
Dial everything back into comfort settings and the i4’s dual-nature begins to really shine thanks to its adaptive suspension package that helps to iron out bumps and makes for a smooth, silent and hugely premium daily driver or grand touring machine.
All up, the i4 platform is an exceptional package that showcases the best of what we can expect from BMW as it moves toward an electrified future that offers no compromises whatsoever for the driver or the comfort of the passengers.
Is it Practical and Spacious?
As you can expect from a car that shares its platform and dimensions with the existing 4 Series, the BMW i4 is a strong performer when it comes to occupant space and comfort that makes it a great daily driver and even an option for growing families.
With that in mind, the driver and front passenger are treated to a well-appointed, high-tech and super premium cockpit that offers a heap of headroom and adjustability in the seating position.
It all feels very familiar to BMW’s interior design, which emphasises sleek lines and simplicity that make the front of the cabin a wonderful place to sit.
There’s also a surprising amount of storage options with a sliding cubby hole for smartphones and loose items behind the gear lever, storage inside the folding arm rest and door bins either side, as well as a set of cupholders that make the i4 genuinely practical.
Move to the rear of the cabin and there’s just enough legroom for adult rear passengers, meaning you won’t hear any complaints from kids or teenagers in the second row, while the available headroom has been somewhat eaten up by the sloping roofline design.
The second row features a pair of ISOFIX anchors and top tether mounts for child seats that add to the family-friendly nature of the i4 platform.
Finally, the BMW i4’s boot offers cargo volumes of 470L with the rear seats standing, which expands to 1,290L to help accommodate large, bulky objects and add to the practicality package.
What are the Range Figures & Charging Times of the BMW i4?
The entry-level BMW i4 eDrive consumes electricity at 16-20kWh per 100km, which gives it a range figure of 590km per charge on the WLTP test cycle.
Opting for the dual-motor i4 M50 increases its energy usage up to 19-24kWh per 100km, and results in a reduced range figure of 510km per charge.
Both variants receive 200kW DC fast-charging that can bring the battery packs from 10-80 per cent charge in 31-minutes. In the eDrive40, a ten-minute charge with a fast-charger adds 164km of range, while 10-minutes of charging in the M50 adds a claimed 140km.
Using BMW’s Wallbox at home offers a full charge in a claimed 8 hours and 30-minutes.
Is it Safe?
The BMW i4 is yet to receive an official ANCAP safety rating, although EuroNCAP has given it a four-star rating.
As standard, the i4 comes fitted with a heap of active safety equipment, including autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, front cross-traffic alerts, forward collision warnings, lane-keep assist with lane departure alerts, semi-autonomous steering mode and a surround-view camera atop a heap of airbags inside the cabin as standard.
Our Verdict: Is the BMW i4 Worth it?
While the first-generation release of any new car, letalone a groundbreaking battery-electric release can prove a risk for buyers, you can rest assured that the i4 is a wonderful, dynamic and typically-premium vehicle from one of the world’s leading manufacturers.
The base model ticks every possible box out there, while the M50 range-topper adds a heap of performance to the mix for buyers looking for sports car thrills.
As a result, we can’t help but recommend that you add it to your shortlist of all-electric sedans that offer a slice of the future for the here-and-now.
Five Specs You Need to Know
Three-year/unlimited KM warranty
No official ANCAP safety rating yet
Two electric motor configurations available
590km range for eDrive40 drops to 510km in M50
84kWh battery can be fast-charged to 200kW
Sharp handling with a heap of driving feedback
Adaptive suspension calms down fo smooth town driving
Useable range figures for real-world driving
Thrilling performance in M50 flagship
Limited three-year warranty
Second row space behind key rivals
No official ANCAP safety rating just yet
OnlineAuto Rating: 9/10
BMW i4 Competition
|Tesla Model 3|
|Audi e-tron GT|