Very successful on the previous generation of the 4 Series, the Gran Coupé format returns to the second generation. A BMW eagerly awaited by a restyled Audi A5 Sportback two years ago. First virtual face-to-face.
Rare are the segments where the three German premiums are not all present at the same time. On that of the “five-door coupes”, Audi, BMW, and Mercedes do not yet offer quite the same thing. And if the A7 Sportback, Series 8 Gran Coupé, and CLS are fighting each other with their 5 meters length, the A5 Sportback and Series 4 Gran Coupé have no opponents at Mercedes. At a time when BMW is unveiling the second generation of its “extended” 4 Series, a first virtual face-to-face with Audi is required.
Although it is significantly larger than its predecessor (+ 14 cm in length), the new 4 Series Gran Coupé models its dimensions on those of its direct opponent. It is 4.78m long, 1.85m wide, and 1.44m high, just a few millimeters the size of the A5 Sportback. Ditto for the wheelbase, which climbs to 2.85m for the Munich driver and tops out at 2.82m for her opponent. Although we haven't yet been able to get into the new 4 Series Gran Coupé, the livability promises to be very close aboard the two Germans. The very tilted roof necessarily forces you to lower your head to access the bench with the same feeling of confinement on board due to the limited light. The trunk should not distinguish them either, since it is advertised at 470 liters for the BMW and 480 for the Audi. Not enough to make these “grand coupés” model wagons, but enough for one or two long journeys a year with limited luggage.
Similarly constructed interiors
Despite a near cut-and-paste exterior with the all-recent i4, the new 4 Series Gran Coupé has remained sober for its interior. We, therefore, find exactly the same layout as on board the standard 4 Series but also as the 3 Series and… the 5 Series. In the new Gran Coupé, we, therefore, find a 12.3-inch counter screen and a multimedia touch screen of 10.25 inches overlooking an air conditioning unit. Very seriously built, this interior simply lacks distinctive signs to stand out from its brothers.
Onboard the A5 Sportback, the driver is still left with a choice between needle counters and the Virtual Cockpit, namely a 12.3-inch digital panel. The 10.1-inch multimedia display is standard. For the rest, the Rings had retained, at the time of the 2019 restyling, physical air conditioning controls. But again, two systems are possible depending on the price you want to put on it. These differences in staffing will nevertheless not be such as to upset the ergonomics, which promises to be quite similar in the two models.
A wider range of engines for the Audi
For the start of its career, the new 4 Series Gran Coupé plays it rather pragmatic. Only one diesel engine is available, the well-known 2.0 turbo with 190 hp. Necessarily associated with the 8-speed automatic transmission and a 48V micro-hybridization, it can also receive assistance from the optional xDrive all-wheel drive. In essence, the 420i of 184 hp should represent the vast majority of sales compared to a 440i xDrive of 374 hp with 6-cylinder admittedly attractive but at the inevitably very high price, not to mention a penalty of between 6,000 and 10,000. € in 2021 alone ...
Opposite, the A5 Sportback leaves a little more choice. Starting with three diesel: 35 TDI (163 hp), 40 TDI (204 hp, optional Quattro), and the V6 of 341 hp and 700 Nm of torque from the S5. In essence, we also find the 35 TFSI (150 hp) and the 40 TFSI (204 hp, optional Quattro) before the delirious RS5 and its twin-turbo V6 of 450 hp. To answer him, a 510 hp M4 Gran Coupé will complete the range well in a second step.
All engines of the new BMW 4 Series Gran Coupé
420i 163 hp
M440 i xDrive 374 hp
420d 190 hp
420d xDrive 190 hp
All engines of the Audi A5 Sportback
35 TFSI 150 hp
40 TFSI 204 hp
RS5 450 hp
35 TDI 163 hp
40 TDI 204 hp
S5 TDI 340 hp
Broadly identical prices
Starting at € 49,700 (420i), the new 4 Series Gran Coupé isn't going to be cheap. But the difference with an entry-level A5 Sportback 35 TFSI, sold for € 43,440, is a decoy. As we said above, the Audi can ignore certain equipment such as the meter display or "digital" air conditioning and thus lower its access price. In diesel, the gap is closing as both models start at just over € 52,000.