BMW 4 Series 440i Gran Coupe
For the longest time, the 3 Series was BMW’s compact sedan and coupe. That changed in 2014 when BMW decided to split the coupe models to form the new 4 Series. You would think that the 4 Series would be entirely made up of 2-door sporty coupes, but you would be wrong. There’s the 4 Series Gran Coupe, which is a 4-door sedan in a coupe-style body.
Talk about confusing consumers. The newest 4 Series Gran Coupe is the 440i Gran Coupe, which replaces the 435i Gran Coupe. As is the norm with BMW’s nomenclature these days, the new 440i Gran Coupe does not have a 4-liter engine. Instead, it has a turbocharged 3-liter straight six and it is a totally new power plant from BMW’s new B-series of engines.
The old 435i Gran Coupe also had a turbocharged 3-liter straight six, but this new engine is more powerful and fuel efficient. Maximum power output is now 326hp and 450nm of torque, that’s about 20hp and 50nm more than the outgoing 435i. The new 440i Gran Coupe also gets a new 8-speed automatic transmission with revised gear ratios - shorter ratios for the first two gears and taller ones for the others. This should mean sprightlier takeoffs and more relaxed cruising.
4-door sedans with coupe styling have been quite popular of late, and the 440i Gran Coupe can be said to be a handsome car. It sits low and has a swooping silhouette, which some may find more attractive than the regular 4-door 3 Series sedan. Without driving the 440i and 435i Gran Coupes back to back, it is hard to tell how much faster the new 440i Gran Coupe is, but BMW’s claim of 5.1 seconds to 100km/h feels just about right.
The 440i Gran Coupe is not a small car and it weighs nearly 1,600kg, but it sprints off the line quickly. There is a slight hint of turbo lag, but once the 440i Gran Coupe gets going, the manner in which it moves up the gears and gains speed is impressive. It also makes a pretty nice sound as it rushes towards its 7,000rpm redline. In Sport Plus mode, the 440i Gran Coupe even crackles and pops on the overrun. What’s less impressive, however, is the 440i Gran Coupe’s steering feel.
There’s an alarming lack of it, which can discourage drivers from exploring the limits of the car. Even in Sport Plus mode, the steering only feels heavier and there no actual feedback between you and what’s happening on the road. As a result, the 440i Gran Coupe feels most comfortable cruising on highways, rather than attacking turns on bendy stretches of road. So no, the 440i Gran Coupe isn’t at all like a mini-M4. In fact, its character is more akin to BMW’s more mature 5 and 7 Series sedans.
With that in mind, the 440i Gran Coupe is actually a very refined cruiser. The ride, even in the two available sports mode, never feels harsh and happily soaks up any bumps that I threw at it, making drives supremely comfortable. And the powerful engine makes highway cruising a breeze. With so much grunt on tap, overtaking other cars is as you would expect, effortless.
The 440i Gran Coupe also comes with BMW ConnectedDrive, which is a suite of connected car technologies and services. The highlight of this is Concierge Services, which puts you through to an operator who can help you with a variety of tasks. Not sure where the nearest McDonald’s or Starbucks is?
Not only can Concierge Services tell you where they are, but they can also send the location directly to the navigation. Another nifty feature of ConnectedDrive is that the car can automatically dial for emergency services should you be unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident, which is really thoughtful.
The 440i Gran Coupe’s voice recognition also deserves special mention as it could easily pick up local addresses such as Genting Lane and Tanjong Pagar. As the top-of-the-line model in BMW’s 4 Series Gran Coupe lineup, the 440i Gran Coupe is an extremely competent car.
It may not be the most sporty or confidence-inspiring, but it offers oodles of power, a calm ride, seats four comfortably, and even has fold flat rear seats to double boot space. The only problem is that it commands a considerable premium over the four-door 340i sedan - around $14,000 to be exact - which offers similar features and performance. Whether the 440i Gran Coupe’s sleeker look is worth that much extra is entirely up to you.
The 440i Gran Coupe isn’t the most engaging to drive, but it is still a very competent all-rounder for well-heeled individuals and families.
At a Glance:
Engine Turbocharged inline 6-cylinder.
Engine displacement 2,998cc.
Maximum power and torque 2,998cc.
Fuel consumption, combined 7.4l/100km.
Price $291,800 (inclusive COE, accurate as of time of writing).
The 440i Gran Coupe’s interior is adorn with high quality materials and is a nice place to sit in.
The instrument cluster is extremely legible, while the steering wheel feels good in the hands and provides quick access to media controls.
The brakes need some getting used to and require commitment to haul the car to a stop from high speeds.