Expert Reviews

First Drive: BMW 440i M Sport Coupe

Thursday 27 April 2017

First Drive: BMW 440i M Sport Coupe
Summary

BMW’s idea for the 4 Series is a simple one. Take a 3 Series saloon, take out the rear doors for a sleeker look and add a 4 Series badge to the back. The 440i Coupe that we’re testing is the flagship model in the range – save the highly powered M4 of course.

The exterior changes to this 2017 car are subtle. There are LED lights now fitted to the front and rear of the car, while BMW has re-worked the car’s interior with three new upholstery choices now available as well as three new options for interior trim strips.

Looks & Image

There’s no denying that the 4 Series is a good-looking car. There are plenty of muscular lines across the exterior, while its wide stance gives it a real presence on the road. It’s an understated image, that’s for sure, but one that works.

The interior of the 440i feels just as luxurious as you’d expect a BMW cabin to be, with plenty of high-quality materials used throughout. All of the controls are solid and robust, and hard plastics are few and far between – though there are a few scratchier surfaces to be found around the lower reaches of the doors.

Space & Practicality

There’s plenty of room for those sat up front, with a good amount of head and shoulder room. It’s also a relatively airy cabin thanks to a large windscreen, which means that it never feels claustrophobic.

Yes, the 440i does have rear seats. However, they’re little use for transporting anyone but small children – even taller kids will struggle to get comfortable. If you’re looking for better practicality levels, then the 3 Series remains the go-to choice.

There’s a good amount of boot space to be found, however, with the 440i able to offer a respectable 425 litres of storage capacity – more than enough for a few weekend bags.

Behind the Wheel

There’s no getting away from the 440i’s talents on the road. On motorways it remains comfortable and refined, with its powerful engine turning overtaking into an effortless action – something you’d want in a long-distance cruiser.

A fair amount of snow on our test route did mean that we couldn’t push the 440i too hard, but the car remained composed through sharp bends despite the conditions. The steering inspires a fair amount of confidence, though it lacks a certain amount of feel.

The Sport driving mode helps make things a bit more responsive. Pressing it adds weight to the steering as well as sharpening the car’s throttle response. It also changes the eight-speed automatic gearbox’s setup slightly, meaning that it’ll hold on to cogs longer than when set to Normal mode.

Value for Money

Prices for the 440i start at a considerable £43,430, meaning that it’s an expensive purchase before you’ve even gone near the options list. That said, the amount of equipment fitted as standard as impressive, as it’s only available in M Sport trim. This gives you 18-inch alloy wheels, M Sport suspension and satellite navigation as standard. More aggressive body styling and LED headlamps are thrown in, too.

The 440i’s infotainment system is a stand-out feature on the car. The dash-mounted display is clear and easy to read, while the head-up display relays key information back to the driver in accurate readouts. Because of it, you don’t need to take your eyes off the road for too long to find out important instructions like satellite navigation routes.

Who would buy one ?

The BMW 440i is aimed at middle-aged buyers who want a performance coupe with a certain degree of refinement. It’ll appeal to those drivers who want a little more punch, but without the razor-sharp handling and performance found in the range-topping M4.

Facts at a Glance

Engine tested: 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol
Power: 322bhp
Torque: 450Nm
Max speed: 155mph
0-60mph: 5.0 seconds
MPG: 38.2
Emissions: 172g/km

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