THE BMW M4 is effectively an M3 Coupe, but don’t let that thought put you off, in fact block it out of your mind. The 2018 BMW M4 Pure Edition is fast, engaging, and hugely desirable.
For many purists though, the M4’s turbo-charged 6-cylinder engine can’t match the old days of a naturally aspirated V8 (when the coupe was an M3) for drama and character. But look past the artificial soundtrack, and you’ll discover a truly great setup.
It delivers the sort of pace that will have super car owners looking nervously in their rear view mirror, and yet is far more efficient than the unit it replaces. Better still, like all BMW M cars, the M4 is thrilling to drive.
The rear wheel drive handling demands respect in slippery conditions, but the upshot is that while you have to have your wits about you, that helps it deliver an involving driving experience.
The Competition models that are also available across the M range are even more extreme, but demand a compromise in ride comfort. Factor in the decent everyday practicality of the M4 though, and this BMW is a true super car for every occasion.
The M4 Pure Edition gets some nice upgrades from the ‘regular’ M4, including LED headlights and rear lights, upgrades to the infotainment system and some minor interior trim changes, while the Competition variant gets its own set of 20-inch alloy wheels.
It’s worth noting here that since first deciding to offer the BMW M4 as a separate model line to the BMW M3 saloon, the German go faster masters from Munich have also introduced even sportier, limited-editions like the BMW M4 GTS.
Dive under the hood and the M4 features BMW’s twin turbo 3.0 litre inline 6-cylinder engine that in its latest guise, punches out 331kW of power and an absolute bucket load of torque.
To deliver motor sport grade performance, engineers took a holistic approach to the M4, and the M3 too, reducing weight, improving aerodynamics and adding a race bred power train, which translates quite nicely to 0-100km/h in 3.8 seconds.
Despite the pumped up performance though, it does fall short in one area, that engine sound. The old V8 was naturally aspirated, wailing like a banshee, high on amphetamines when flogged.
While the M4 is melodic in its own right, emitting a resonant sort of tune that’s at least partially enabled by a variable, twin pipe exhaust system, it’s still not quite as pleasing to the ear as that old V8.
In spite of the M4 Coupe’s sporting intentions, its interior is buttoned down and richer than you might expect in such a speed-focused machine. Much of the dashboard and door panels are constructed of low sheen, coarsely grained soft plastics that are squishy to the touch and highly premium.
The carbon fibre trim seems to glow all on its own. We were also smitten with its seat belts, which have the M logo’s tri colour motif woven right in, a frivolous if not amusing touch. Build quality is flawless.
Once inside, there’s a surprising amount of leg room, but the sloping roof means your passengers will have to slouch to stop their heads from brushing the ceiling. There’s only room for two in the back with the space between them given over to an armrest.
There is ample legroom, but head space for six footers might be nice.
BMW’s standard iDrive infotainment system continues to be one of the best available anywhere. Its colour screen and rotary dial controller require no fumbling around and prodding a screen on the move, and its menu structure is extremely easy to follow and memorise.
The M4 offers an impressive array of features as standard too, including 19-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth, DAB, SatNav and heated seats. However if you feel the need to personalise your M4, there are a large amount of optional extras to choose from.
Driving one of the best performance cars on sale comes at a price, so you’ll need deep pockets to buy an M4 coupé or Convertible, with prices starting at $144,000. That said, its main rivals all costs around the same amount, so aren’t any kinder to your wallet.
The BMW M4 is available in an array of colours, including Alpine White, Mineral Grey, Austin Yellow, Mineral White, Yas Marina Blue, Sakhir Orange II, Black Sapphire and San Marino Blue.
Our test vehicle was provided by BMW Australia. To find out more about the 2018 BMW M4 Pure Edition, contact your local BMW dealer. BMW M4 Pure Edition pictures courtesy of CMC Photography.
Road Test: 2018 BMW M4 Pure Edition
Pros – staggering pace; engaging handling; great interior.
Cons – only comes alive at speed; high price tag; not overly practical.