BMW New Zealand will introduce the new, high-performance BMW M4 later this year, with a significant power increase headlining the host of changes for the new model year.

As commonly happens in New Zealand, we will see just one model offering for the car, the M4 Competition Coupé with M xDrive. The new M4 now delivers an output of 390kW from its M TwinPower Turbo straight six powerplant, which is up 15kW on the previous offering.

Other enhancements include revisions to the exterior styling package, availability of a new M forged wheel design and equipment upgrades for the cabin, including deployment of the BMW Operating System 8.5 running on the new high-definition BMW Curved Display.

Announcement of the new M4’s introduction comes off the back of BMW New Zealand taking first place globally for the sale of BMW M cars among the overall model mix in 2023. Robust growth throughout the year elevated the country to the top, with sales of BMW M high performance cars – including the M4 – up 31.7 per cent.

2024 BMW M4: M-typical performance

BMW claims that powerful proportions and M-specific design features for optimising the cooling air supply and the aerodynamic balance underpins its status as a high-performance sports car. The large, vertical BMW kidney grille sporting M-typical and horizontally arranged double slats, wheel arches and prominently flared side sills with a contrasting high-gloss black finish as well as attachments for the front and rear aprons provide clear reference to the car’s dynamic potential.

2024 BMW M4: Straight six-cylinder engine with motorsport technology and new performance specification

The straight six-cylinder power unit used in the new BMW M4 Coupé combines the typical high-revving characteristics offered by engines from BMW M GmbH with the current version of M TwinPower Turbo technology.

The engine’s design features are derived directly from motorsport. They include the extremely stiff crankcase – which is manufactured in a sleeveless closed-deck design – the weight-reduced forged crankshaft and iron coating, which is applied to the cylinder liners in an arc wire spraying process (AWSP). Manufactured in a 3D printing process, the cylinder head core features an optimised routing of the coolant ducts – an aspect that cannot be achieved using conventional metal casting technology. BMW says the result is that both weight and temperature management are optimised. As with the cooling system, the oil supply is also aligned to the special demands of racetrack use.

Maximum power output of the straight six-cylinder power unit variant featured in both the new BMW M4 Competition Coupé with M xDrive has been increased from 375kW to 390kW, with the maximum output reached at an engine speed of 6,250rpm. The uprated engine develops maximum torque of 650Nm within an extended engine speed range of between 2,750 and 5,730rpm. This engine also serves as the basis for the power plant featured in the BMW M4 GT3 race machine that will compete at next month’s Bathurst 12 Hour endurance race.

The new BMW M4 Competition Coupé with M xDrive can accelerate from 0 to 100km/h in 3.5 seconds and has an electronically limited top speed of 250km/h.

2024 BMW M4: Honed on the Nürburgring

The 8-speed M Steptronic transmission with Drivelogic fitted to the BMW M4 Competition Coupé with M xDrive is perfectly matched to the performance characteristics of the M TwinPower Turbo engine, says BMW.

The driver can select, in addition to the default setting 4WD, the 4WD Sport mode, whereby a greater percentage of torque is directed to the rear axle. In addition, when DSC is deactivated, the 2WD mode becomes available for exclusive transmission of power to the rear wheels.

It is claimed the integrated application of all drive and suspension systems, which was tested on the northern loop of the Nürburgring, guarantees, also in everyday traffic, highly dynamic and precisely controllable handling. With M Traction Control function, which is standard equipment for New Zealand, the driver can reduce system interventions in stages to cautiously approach the physical limits of driving when the car is used, for example, on the racetrack.

2024 BMW M4: Wheel sizes aligned to each axle

Axle-specific wheel sizes ensure a comprehensive transfer of lateral forces during dynamic cornering. The standard configuration for the BMW M4 Competition Coupé with M xDrive offered in New Zealand comprises M forged light alloys of 19-inch at the front and 20-inch at the rear.

2024 BMW M4: Assistance systems with a configurable range of functions

Standard equipment for the M4 Competition Coupé with M xDrive includes Driving Assistant Professional, which features Speed Limit Assist, Lane Keeping Assistant and Active Cruise Control with Stop & Go functionality. It also includes Parking Assistant Plus, which facilitates automatic parking, including entering and leaving spaces, while also integrating Reversing Assistant.

2024 BMW M4: New headlight design, taillights featuring laser technology

The redesigned headlights give the front end of the new BMW M4 Coupé a modern look. They also feature further developments in their functionality, with both the low and high beam now produced by the same LED module. Two vertical LED units, each aligned in an arrowhead shape, assume the function of position and daytime running lights as well as direction indicators.

Adaptive LED headlights, combined with visually and technologically impressive LED taillights that feature laser technology, are fitted to the BMW M4. The innovative technology for the taillight units was presented for the first time on the special high-performance model BMW M4 CSL, a model limited to a global production run of just 1,000 units.

Optional M design graphics in contrasting colours for the bonnet and the rear lid are available for customers to style and personalise the BMW M4 to suit their individual styling preferences.

The contrasting colour emphasises the sporting characteristics of the two-door model and is available either in High Gloss Black or High Gloss Red.

2024 BMW M4: M-specific sportscar cockpit

The modern motorsport ambience inside the new high-performance model has also undergone further development. A new steering wheel design and control elements as well as high-class materials for the instrument panel and interior trims enhance the exclusive cabin ambience.

The standard M leather steering wheel with multifunction buttons, two M buttons and shift paddles for now convey to the driver an even more intensive racetrack feel, says BMW. The new design comprises a flattened lower section of the steering wheel rim and concisely modified spokes.

An M Alcantara steering wheel is available for the first time, further evoking the feel of top level motorsport.

The M-specific cockpit arrangement also includes a control panel on the centre console, on which the shift lever or gear selector switch, the red Start/Stop button, the BMW iDrive Controller, the Setup and M Mode buttons are positioned. These can be activated for individual vehicle configuration as well as for the range of functions of cockpit displays and driver assistance systems, which can be adapted to suit the driving situation at hand. 

M sports seats come as standard and offer electrically operated adjustment options, integrated headrests and illuminated model logos. The ideal position behind the wheel can be stored using the memory function. Heated seats for both driver and front passenger are also standard, while ‘Merino’ leather upholstery, offered in its full version for Competition variants, is available in eight colours.

2024 BMW M4: BMW Curved Display and new BMW Operating System 8.5

M-specific information on the high-resolution BMW Curved Display, which is angled towards the driver, helps to keep the focus fully on the task at hand. The fully digital display combination comprises a 12.3-inch display behind the steering wheel and a 14.9-inch, centre-mounted control display.

The BMW Curved Display serves as a platform for the current BMW iDrive system used in the new BMW M4 Coupé. The display and operating system, which also includes the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant and is therefore actively designed for touch and voice control, is now based on the BMW Operating System 8.5. The M-specific graphics and contents on the information screen and on the control display are complemented by a new form of operation for the standard 3-zone automatic climate control. Temperature setting, ventilation intensity, heating of both seat and steering wheel can now either be controlled per touch control via a special menu option in the lower part of the control display or by means of voice control.

As with the illumination of the footwells and the storage compartments in the centre console and door openers, colour and brightness can be adapted according to individual preferences. There is a choice of nine different colours, while the range of interior lighting includes an atmospheric Welcome and Goodbye scenario as well as light signals that indicate an open door and incoming phone calls.

The standard feature BMW Live Cockpit Professional also comprises the cloud-based navigation system BMW Maps. BMW Head-up Display, which is also standard, projects M-specific style driving-related information onto the windscreen, including multi-coloured rev range representation, shift lights and M View.

Furthermore, the standard feature BMW Live Cockpit Professional encompasses two USB ports for data transfer and a wireless network interface as well as smartphone integration, permitting the use of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. In addition, telephony with wireless charging of compatible smartphones and high output harmon/kardon surround sound system are all included in the standard equipment range for the new BMW M4 Coupé.

2024 BMW M4: Targeted customisation with M Carbon exterior package and BMW M Performance Parts

A model-specific M Carbon exterior package is available for precise customisation of the new M4, bringing to the fore its race-inspired character. The M Carbon exterior package includes inserts for the wide-open front air intakes and a rear diffuser, each featuring its own geometry, exterior mirror caps and a CRP rear spoiler. BMW Performance Parts provide additional options for adapting the intensive driving experience and the dynamic aura of the new high-performance sportscars to suit the driver’s preferences.

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How on earth to start this? I've been car/bike/truck crazy since I was a teen. Like John, I had the obligatory Countach poster on the wall. I guess I'm more officially into classic and muscle cars than anything else - I currently have a '65 Sunbeam Tiger that left the factory the same day as I left the hospital as a newborn with my mother. How could I not buy that car? In 2016 my wife and I drove across the USA in a brand-new Dodge Challenger, and then shipped it home. You can read more on www.usa2nz.co.nz. We did this again in 2019 in a 1990 Chev Corvette - you can read about that trip on DriveLife. I'm a driving instructor and an Observer for the Institute of Advanced Motorists - trying to do my bit to make our roads safer.

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