M 4 MAYHEM
Everyone has a favorite right? Well, the BMW M4 has to be one of my favorite cars currently on sale in India. A couple of weeks back, I have spent a good 5 days driving the M4 in and around Delhi. Here is a day by day account of the same!
It’s a Wednesday. It has been quite a boring week so far to be honest. Haven’t really got anything interesting to drive from the last 2 weeks. I get a call from Gaurav (PR for BMW India) telling me that the M4 was available for a review over the weekend.
As soon as I reach BMW’s office in Gurgaon, it starts to rain like cats and dogs which can be a bit concerning when you have a really powerful german sportscar at your disposal- and that too in the nerving traffic of Gurgaon. Post getting the car out of the parking lot, I changed the suspension and steering settings to Comfort mode and the gearbox into efficient mode-which eased up things a bit. And when I say ‘a bit’- I mean it. Even in its most relaxed self, the M4 just doesn’t wanna sober up.
Once I reached the Delhi- Gurgaon highway, I was being extra cautious as it was pouring plus I was getting accustomed to the controls, dimensions and the ground clearance of the car. No real hard driving on Day 1 or any hero moments, just getting used to the car.
We had planned an early morning shoot for obvious reasons(sportscars in India are crowd magnets) but the rain gods were not on our side again. The M4 still remains parked quietly in the parking lot throughout the day waiting for the sun and the traffic to settle down. It must be around 11 PM when I started off from North Delhi.
The plan was to do a good 50-60kms on the Outer Ring Road which had just been broadened with loads of new flyovers and of course fresh tarmac. Alright then, suspension, steering and gearbox in sport mode- the exhaust note has gotten a bit louder(more on this later).
Hardly 10kms later, the M4 has started inspiring loads of confidence- the stiff suspension, hard steering is suddenly reminding me of my Go-Kart days. Everything is razor sharp- the steering, gearbox are always urging to be pushed to their limits which I sadly cant on public roads.
A couple of years back I had briefly driven the E90 M3 which came with the bigger 4.0-litre V8 oil burner. This one is powered by a smaller 3.0-litre turbocharged motor.Now purists will argue day in and day out about how that car had more character than the new F30 variants but to be really honest, you blindfold them and put them in the F30s and there is a very high possibility of them mistaking one some the another.
The ONLY giveaway can be the exhaust note in which of course is affected by the engine displacement and cylinders. BMW has taken care of that as well( the speakers can imitate the exhaust notes). We have to accept the fact engine capacities will be smaller and smaller in the future(gotta save them melting glaciers as well) and the turbo wizardry is getting better by the day which means that turbocharged cars are both- faster and more efficient than before. The M4 has a twin-turbo setup- which as the name suggests is pretty simple- two turbos working in tandem ensuring smoother power delivery. Talking about power, the M4 has 431bhp of power and 550Nm of torque at its disposal. All of it goes down to the rear wheels via a 7-speed DCT gearbox. According to BMW, the M4 accelerates from 0-100kmph in just 4.1 seconds and goes all the way upto a limited top speed of 250kmph. During our test, we managed a respectable 4.3-second figure(the roads were wet and the rear tyres were not in the best of shape).
Straight line power is impressive, no major complaints there (apart from the wheelspins during a launch). What really stood out for me personally(again comparing with the old M3) is that the M4 feels very brisk on its toes as it only weighs 1,500kg, thanks to the extensive usage of lightweight materials(the roof is made out of carbon-fibre). This has not only improved the overall performance but also the fuel-efficiency which is now up by almost 25 percent. You wouldn’t really wanna bother yourself with the efficiency figures on an M4 but if you drive it sanely( gearbox in efficient, suspension and steering in comfort)- you can achieve some really respectable fuel figures ( I managed up to 12 kmpl on an empty stretch)!
Now it’s time to return the M4. One of the toughest part of being in this profession is the fact that we have to let go of such beauties after a few days. It has been a fun week with the M4 and I can safely say that the M4 still remains to be the best sports coupe on sale in India currently. Sadly, our market doesn’t get the M2 (M4’s cheaper and more fun younger sibling). If I had around Rs. 1.3 cr to spend on a car, the M4 would be the definite choice!