New 2021 BMW M4: prices, specs and launch date

The new BMW M4 will go on sale next year – and it’ll be powered by a 503bhp 3.0-litre straight-six petrol engine

BMW is preparing a new M4 for 2021, coming in both coupe and cabriolet body styles, where it’ll offer fresh competition for the Mercedes-AMG C 63 and Audi RS 5.

Cosmetically, the new BMW M4 will receive the same makeover as the standard 4 Series, with a pair of enormous kidney grilles, sharp LED headlamps and a reshaped front bumper. BMW’s M-division will also fit their usual selection of design tweaks, adding flared wheel arches, wider side skirts and a more aggressive front splitter.

There’ll be a deeper diffuser at the rear, too, which houses a new quad-exit exhaust system – and the whole car will sit lower to the ground on larger alloy wheels shod in Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres. Unlike the previous-generation model, the convertible variant will also ditch its folding metal hardtop in favour of a fabric roof, to help keep weight to a minimum.

Inside, we expect to find a pair of sports seats, a new sports steering wheel and the same 10.2-inch iDrive infotainment system and 12.3-inch digital instrument binnacle found on the recently revised standard 4 Series – albeit with unique M-branded graphics.

New BMW M4: engines and drivetrain

Like its chassis sibling, the upcoming sixth-generation BMW M3, the new M4 will feature a turbocharged 3.0-litre straight-six petrol engine. However, it won’t be the same S55 engine that was used by the previous-generation model, with BMW electing its all-new S58 unit, which already powers the X3 M and X4 M performance SUVs.

European buyers will be offered a choice of two engine outputs but, like the rest of BMW’s M-badged line-up, UK customers will only be offered the more potent Competition variant. 

The entry-level model will produce 473bhp and 600Nm of torque – and it’ll come with a six- speed manual gearbox as standard. The flagship M4 Competition will have an output of 503bhp and an identical 600Nm of torque. It’ll be available with an eight-speed automatic gearbox which, somewhat unusually for a performance car, won’t use a dual-clutch mechanism. Instead, BMW has opted for a traditional torque convertor setup.

We’re yet to receive specific details on the car’s chassis technology but, during our recent pre-production drive of the new M3 and M4, BMW’s M Development Manager Dirk Häcker hinted that it will receive a stiffer front axle, new electronically control dampers and a locking rear differential – along with a set of larger disc brakes.

From launch, the M4 Competition will be rear-wheel drive only – although an all-wheel drive variant is in the works. When pressed about the new drivetrain, Häcker said: “an M xDrive is coming, but only later.”

When the four-wheel-drive model does arrive, though, it’s architecture should be similar to the selectable system found in the new M5 – giving drivers the option of sending up to 100 per cent of the engine’s power to the rear wheels if desired. 

New 2021 BMW M4: price

Prices for the new BMW M4 are yet to be confirmed – but its four-door sibling, the M3, is expected to start from around £76,000. Given there’s roughly an £7,500 gulf between the standard 3 and 4 Series, that should put the new M4’s starting price at around £83,500.

What are your thoughts on the new BMW M4 Cabriolet? Let us know in the comments section below…

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