Take a look at the photo above for a second: notice the kidney grilles, upright stature, and two-door layout: it’s the new BMW 4 Series. Now look a little bit closer at the driver’s side kidney grille insert, and that little black patch on it: that’s where the M4 badge goes. There’s no use in denying it: we’re looking at the next hot BMW sports coupe.
Aside from the M4 badge, there are a few other features on this car that give away its M status: there’s the M Sport front diffuser/fascia, the M-specific grille bars, as well as the M-signature quad exhausts out back. The rear end also features a more aggressive diffuser and a lip spoiler integrated into the trunk lid. This is also the first time we’ve seen the M4’s full, production-spec full- taillights and full-LED headlights.
Elsewhere around the car, there’s plenty of camouflage over the roof panel, which is a clear indication that the BMW M4 will keep the carbon-fiber roof from the current-generation M3 coupe. The black wheels are shod in aggressive Continental tires and sit next to large, cross drilled brakes with matte gold rotors. That matte gold paint should signal something else important to BMW aficionados: those brakes are carbon ceramic models.
That only leaves one big question: what will motivate the BMW M4? Signs point to a tri-turbocharged, 3.3-liter I-6 making some 450 hp. It should also produce more torque than 295 lb-ft created by the naturally aspirated V-8 in the current M3, and sip less fuel. What BMW will mount to the back of that engine is another question—we’ll probably see the seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission from the old M3 (and the new M5/M6), and we’d hope a six-speed manual will be available, although that’s not a given considering BMW M’s recent attitude towards manual transmissions.
We learned last week that the BMW M4 won't be available for order by dealers this calendar year, indicating that the BMW M4 will probably arrive for the 2015 model year. Expect a debut for the sports coupe sometime early next year. Take a look at the car and let us know what you think.