I had no idea that the car was caught in this stage of undress given that the FEP cars are now publically driving around Munich.
The announcement of the BMW 4er ushers in a new era for BMW in regards to the positioning of its best selling Coupe model and of course the demise of the 3er as a Coupe.
Some accept that the car will be called the 4er due to the demands of the market. Some are still stuck in the way that they will debadge , replace the badge and some will not even look at it because it is a 4er.
But we all know that they will end up behind the wheel.
It is evolutionary but the proportions have been played with , the sleeker outline moves the car further away from the 3er in both stature and the all important price.
Physically with the exterior you are talking about one or two areas that are shared with the sedan. It also allows the viewer to now imagine the missing jigsaw piece the 2er which gets a similar sportier outline but in more compact proportions.
With the 4er it is all about positioning. The car justifies its market by extending exclusivity in the segment , style is important as a key distinguishing point . But for the engineers there is also the justification for making the car drive as well as it looks and seperate it from the core 3er Sedan. in other words look for a new level of dynamics compared to the Audi A5 and Mercedes-Benz C-Klasse.
Of course there will be a new challenger in the guise of the Lexus IS coupe which shows that Lexus want their US no 1 position back and judging by what is on the table in Tokyo in regards to mid-sized and smaller SUVs and Coupes, this time they mean business.
The Concept car of the Coupe will be shown in January , it will also show in Geneva.
The production car I heard today is heading to the Shanghai Autoshow in May as BMW aim to change the perception of the designated 4 with the new car in China where BMW have again outpaced Audi and Mercedes-Benz considerably.
I have heard that Chris Bangle has even given the car the thumbs up from a design point of view.