too bad for the pounds

By falling off the top, the BMW M4 had the great idea of ​​reverting to a good old classic canvas. It’s better for the line, both in terms of look and on the scale. And too bad for the extra pounds, inevitable on a convertible. The still furious 510 hp inline 6 howls in the open and the 4-wheel drive makes it a true all-season M. Even if it becomes one of the least sporty of the Motorsport range.

Logical continuation, in the wake of the renewal of the M3 / M4 duo in early 2021, the range quickly declined in convertible. All M3s have traditionally been entitled to it since the E36 in 1993. Even if, by nature, a convertible is always fatally less sporty than the coupe from which it derives : lower rigidity, increased weight caused by structural reinforcements, convertible top mechanism … or worse, retractable rigid roof! A fashionable time among the convertibles, the roof type “Coupé – Cabriolet” inevitably implied an even greater excess weight. The two previous generations of BMW 3 Series / 4 Series convertible were designed in this way … The return to a traditional canvas top for the 4 Series G22 (G83 for the M4) is therefore good news. Already for the eyes : much more balanced rear ¾, and even if the car is more imposing, the whole seems less heavy. And as we know today very well how to make perfectly insulated convertible tops, acoustic comfort is no longer a critical subject. That of the Series 4 is actually an in-between, made up of metal panels covered with canvas. Remarkably efficient in any case, even at high speed: no more air noises than on board the coupe, at least up to 150 km / h.

Besides the aesthetic benefit, the M4 thus rigged saves a few precious kilos. It would thus gain a few tens of 10 kg compared to the mechanism of the old M4 convertible (the mechanism is 40% lighter). Appreciable, especially as less weight at roof level results in a lower center of gravity. But all these efforts are quickly erased. Dimensions, constant gentrification … and all-wheel drive. Unlike the coupe and the sedan, the M4 convertible is fitted with the xDrive as standard. It is fatal: 1,920 kg in total. More compact and radical, it will be the work of a future M2 (not yet formalized).

Bourgeois sportswoman or brutal GT?

Given the spirit of the car, less sharp than its covered counterpart, an M convertible flanked by 4-wheel drive is far from inconsistent. You might as well push the efficiency slider to the maximum, even if it means getting angry with a handful of purists. After all, the M xDrive has already proven itself: depending on the mode chosen, the car behaves in pure propulsion. Boarding fans will be able to let off steam, especially today. 510 hp without winter tires, at an altitude of nearly 2,000 m in October, there should be enough to do two or three sweats. Less than expected, in fact. On the first laps of the wheels, let’s stay cautiously in intermediate Sport mode. The apprehensions fly in, say … 500 meters and two turns. It grips, it drives, strong and everywhere. Just like driving the coupe, in the open this time, and partly in rain and snow today.

Test - BMW M4 Cabriolet (2022): too bad for the pounds
The M4 is an imposing machine 4.80 m long and 1.89 m wide. The monster intimidates but does not bite … except in Sport Plus mode, ESP deactivated: 510 hp in pure propulsion. By zero degrees, we keep the margin.

Good to know: anticipate the purchase and resale.

It is possible to know the resale or trade-in value of your vehicle thanks to the auto Turbo rating of your BMW M4, the alternative to the Argus rating.

The other question then arises: at what speed does the rain stop entering the passenger compartment? Very early, at least for the front occupants. From 70 km / h, we are sure to stay pretty much dry. Then, the air eddies are almost absent up to about 110 km / h. We are there very quickly: 3.7 s from 0 to 100 km / h, with Launch Control. It is paradoxical, the heavy convertible M4 is thus 2 small tenths faster than the sedan in simple propulsion. A shame!

Too bad, the carbon buckets of our version deprive of the neck heating (15,000 € with the M Performance track pack including the carbon-ceramic brakes, allowing to grab 25 kg). No problem, the show impresses and Sport Plus mode activated, we will have the opportunity to warm up. There, the 6 cylinder is finally released. He was already singing just a little earlier, although a little too polished. As on the coupe and the sedan, each parameter is individually adjustable, and two pre-defined “à la carte” configurations are accessible via the two buttons M1 and M2 located on the steering wheel. ESP cut, the M xDrive then switches to “all the rear”, on demand. Playful, as long as you think before you act and have room. 510 hp, and 650 Nm to channel on the rear end: at the moment when one wonders how to catch up with a mistake, it is too late.

Test - BMW M4 Cabriolet (2022): too bad for the pounds
Including the convertible top mechanism, the structural reinforcements and the xDrive present automatically, the M4 Cabriolet is heavier by around 120 kg than an M3 “propu”. This does not prevent it from accelerating harder (2 tenths of less than 0 to 100).

The 6 in line at maturity

It is better to save a little juice for the front and stay in Sport to enjoy the concert more calmly and a little more wisely. Too heavy and angry to be abused on an open road, we expected. The M4 is a kind of European muscle car. Our Mustang, in a way, but with a real chassis. Steering calibrated to the millimeter, consistent without excess. It’s formidable … and comfortable, surprise. We had already noticed during our first contact with this new generation of M3 / M4: the general feeling of the previous M3, rough and nasty, has seriously faded. In its operation, the M4 now runs in both explosive and surgical GT. Much more stable and accurate than the old one, that’s for sure. Too sanitized? No, that’s the Audi RS business. Although, lately …

There is hardly that on a bad road that the torsional rigidity, fatally less than on the coupe, is felt by slight vibrations at the top of the windshield pillars, with the top closed. It won’t have stayed that way for long anyway (18 s for opening, up to 50 km / h).

Test - BMW M4 Cabriolet (2022): too bad for the pounds
The convertible top can be operated in 18 s, up to 50 km / h. The M4 convertible is undoubtedly the least sporty of the family, but represents the nicest way to enjoy the 6 in a row.

During our alpine journey, it was a question of making the most of the primary interest of an uncapped M4: this 6 in line, screaming up to 7,500 laps, that we are starting to get to know well, earshot and unfiltered. Much less rough than the old 3-liter, more singing and at least as explosive. Surprisingly versatile, it’s new: docile at the bottom, round and full all over. Then, thundering and explosive, then furious in the last 2,000 laps before the red zone. Without exhaust effects or artificial boasting, for once. The tone is clear and punctuated by a slight explosion at each gear shift. About 12 seconds would be enough to go to 200 km / h, but we lacked space today. Ah, we forgot: it has been the case for a long time, but remember that the M brakes are holding up now. At least the carbon-ceramic discs of our version. Whether the steel brakes would survive the same treatment remains to be seen.

Test - BMW M4 Cabriolet (2022): too bad for the pounds
€ 115,550 minimum, i.e. € 4,500 more than a classic M4 coupe with xDrive. Unsurprisingly, an M4 has to be earned. And adding our € 30,000 national penalty makes you cringe … or makes you want to move.

Technical characteristics BMW M4 Competition xDrive Cabriolet (2022)

BMW M4 Cabriolet (2022) Technical Sheet
Model tested: BMW M4 Competition xDrive Cabriolet (2022)
Dimensions L x l x h 4,794 / 1,887 / 1,395 m
Wheelbase 2,857 m
Minimum trunk volume 385 l
Empty weight (DIN) 1.920 kg
Engine displacement 6 cylinders gasoline, 2 turbos – 2.993 cm3
Maximum power 510 hp at 6,250 rpm
Maximum torque 650 Nm at 2,750 rpm
0 to 100 km / h 3,7 s
Max speed 250 km / h (limited, option at 280 km / h)
CO2 rate 231 g/km (WLTP)
Mixed consumption (WLTP) 10.2 l / 100 km
Malus 2021 30.000 €
Prices from 115,550 € (tested model: 146,135 €)

Source: – L'info en continu by

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