BMW will be introducing its new second-generation X4 in South Africa this week. Take a look at what you can expect in terms of specification and pricing…
The new X4 shares many similarities with the more mainstream X3, on which it is based, with both of them being manufactured on the same production line at BMW's Spartanburg factory in the USA, where over 1 400 X3, X4, X5, X6 and X7 models are produced daily.
The new X4 will come up against some stiff competition in the premium medium-sized SUV segment, including the likes of the Range Rover Evoque, the Porsche Macan, the Volvo XC60 and, most directly, the Mercedes GLC Coupé.
In M Sport guise, the X4's front bumper treatment is particularly distinctive, but is the kidney-grille treatment not too chunky?
The new X4, like its X3 sister, is based on BMW's CLAR (cluster architecture) platform, which makes extensive use of aluminium and high-strength steel to result in better rigidity. It also makes the new X4 50kg lighter, despite being 81 mm longer (4 752 mm) and 37 mm wider (1 91 8mm). Ride height has been reduced by 3 mm to 1 621 mm and the wheelbase is 54 mm longer (2 864 mm), with a claimed perfect 50/50 weight distribution. The lower centre of gravity will contribute to sportier handling.
The X4 wears a large double kidney grille with LED headlights and wrap-around taillights seen at the rear along with dual exhaust pipes finished in chrome. The X4 will be offered with 3 trim choices including Standard, M Sport and M Sport X, each of which offers distinctive design elements. Some of the optional equipment on offer includes a panorama sunroof, electrically-operated tow bar and adaptive LED headlights.
Four new exotic-sounding colours are available: Phytonic Blue, Sparkling Storm, Flamenco Red and Sunstone metallic.
The X4's interior is clearly derived from that of the X3, but features the latest version of the iDrive infotainment system.
The interior of the X4 shares many similarities with that of its sibling the X3, and has been upscaled to have a more premium feel along with redesigned seats. BMW's latest iDrive system is part of the package and incorporates a 6.5-inch display and iDrive controller. The system offers navigation and as well as Bluetooth, MP3 and USB functionality. Other notable standard features include a leather multifunction steering wheel, 3-zone climate control air conditioning, automatic tailgate, cruise control with brake function, ambient lighting, electronic parking brake and manually adjustable seats.
The new X4 will for the first time be available with exclusive options from the BMW Individual portfolio, allowing a vehicle configuration closely tailored to buyers’ personal style preferences. Luggage space has been bumped up to 525 litres, or 1 430 litres with the 40:20:40 split seats folded down.
The rear 3-quarter view of the new X4 has not drawn universal praise; it is, however, more resolved than on the first version of the car.
A total of 3 engine options will be offered in South Africa, including 2 petrol engines and 1 diesel engine. M performance models can be expected at a later stage.
The petrol range kicks off with a 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder turbopetrol engine in the X4 xDrive20i with 135 kW and 290 Nm of torque which is mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission. Fuel consumption is claimed at 7.8 L/100km and this derivative is capable of sprinting from zero to 100 kph in 8.3 seconds before reaching a top speed of 215 kph.
The local X4 range will be headlined by the M40i derivative powered by a 3.0-litre, 6-cylinder turbopetrol engine with 265 kW and 500 Nm of torque on tap. The M40i makes use of an 8-speed sports automatic transmission with a claimed fuel consumption figure of 9.2 L/100km. Acceleration from zero to 100 kph takes 4.8 seconds and top speed is pegged at 250 kph.
Finally, the only diesel option is the X4 xDrive20d which makes use of a 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder turbodiesel engine with outputs of 140 kW and 400 Nm of torque and is mated with an 8-speed automatic transmission. BMW claims a fuel consumption figure of 5.6 L/100km. Zero to 100 kph is achieved in 8.0 seconds with a top speed of 213 kph.
The latest version of BMW's xDrive four-wheel-drive system (with a rear-wheel bias) is employed, which uses torque-vectoring to vary the amount of power sent to each wheel.
M Sport suspension will be fitted as standard while adaptive suspension will be offered as an option.
The newcomer’s more athletic looks are backed up with sportier performance and better handling characteristics. Up front, there is double-wishbone suspension (as on the X3), and all models have M Sport suspension and speed-sensitive electro-mechanical Servotronic steering directing the 19- to 21-inch wheels. Adaptive suspension will be offered as an option.
The X4 will be most comfortable on good surfaces, but it's not going to turn up its nose at a spot of modest off-road meandering. Ground clearance is fair at 204 mm, while fording depth is 500 mm and ramp, approach and departure angles are 19.4, 25.7 and 22.6 degrees respectively. To compare apples with apples, the Pure version of the Evoque has 213 mm ground clearance, fording depth of 500 mm and ramp, approach and departure angles of 22, 23.2 and 33 degrees respectively.
We will be driving the new BMW X4 on local soil this month, so be sure to look out for our impressions in the near future.
New BMW X4 - Price in SA
BMW X4 xDrive20i (Standard) - R843 000
BMW X4 xDrive20i M Sport - R887 900
BMW X4 xDrive20i M Sport X - R887 900
BMW X4 xDrive20d (Standard) - R843 000
BMW X4 xDrive20d M Sport - R887 900
BMW X4 xDrive20d M Sport X - R887 900
BMW X4 M40i - R1 132 800