So how does it drive? Just as well as the other 4 Series variants. Any loss in total body rigidity did not make itself apparent while jinking through the many curves tracing the Rio Ebro in northeast Spain. Naturally BMW took the precaution of equipping every press vehicle at the launch as a 428i with the $3500 M Sport package (aero-tuned front and rear fascias, 19-inch wheels shod in Bridgestone Potenza S001 tires, sport suspension, sport seats, and other trim), dynamic handling package (Adaptive M Suspension, sport steering, $1000), and four-piston front/two-piston rear fixed-caliper M Sport brakes ($650). So equipped, the latest Gran Coupe inspires the exact same level of confidence that has made this chassis such a formidable competitor in our comparison tests. And don't feel compelled to spring for the six; the four makes terrific noises and acquits itself admirably in the dash from corner to corner. Just make sure you secure whatever you're carrying in all that newfound luggage space. We're inclined to recommend the 4 Gran Coupe over its myriad platform siblings if for no other reason than the success of this (for now) peerless offering may lure Audi's similarly fetching A5 Sportback hatch to our shores.

So to summarize your BMW entry-level luxury decision tree, decide first on your preferred cargo access method: hinged above or below the rear window? If below, then 3 Series sedan, 4 series coupe/convertible. Top hinged options include the X3 sports activity vehicle, the X4 sports activity "coupe," the 3 Series Gran Tourismo (based on China's longer wheelbase, this one is slightly longer and lower but similar in shape to the X4), the 3 Series Touring wagon, and now the 4 Series Gran Coupe. Color us skeptical of BMW product specialists' assurances that these vehicles all behave so differently that buyers won't be conflicted or confused. We suggest you save time in the dealership by first employing a dart board at home.

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BMW 428i Gran Coupe First Test - A Good Driver But Not Differentiated Enough From The Other 3/4 Series Variants

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