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BMW i4 review

Category: Large Electric

Section: Costs & verdict

BMW i4 2021 interior infotainment
  • BMW i4 2021 front cornering
  • BMW i4 2021 rear cornering
  • BMW i4 2021 interior dashboard
  • BMW i4 2021 interior rear seats
  • BMW i4 2021 interior infotainment
  • BMW i4 2021 right tracking
  • BMW i4 2021 left static boot open
  • BMW i4 2021 headlights detail
  • BMW i4 2021 badge detail
  • BMW i4 2021 interior front seats
  • BMW i4 2021 interior detail
  • BMW i4 2021 interior detail
  • BMW i4 2021 boot open
  • BMW i4 2021 front cornering
  • BMW i4 2021 rear cornering
  • BMW i4 2021 interior dashboard
  • BMW i4 2021 interior rear seats
  • BMW i4 2021 interior infotainment
  • BMW i4 2021 right tracking
  • BMW i4 2021 left static boot open
  • BMW i4 2021 headlights detail
  • BMW i4 2021 badge detail
  • BMW i4 2021 interior front seats
  • BMW i4 2021 interior detail
  • BMW i4 2021 interior detail
  • BMW i4 2021 boot open
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Costs & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

The entry-level BMW i4 ​​eDrive40 is fractionally more expensive than the Polestar 2 Long Range Dual Motor and Tesla Model 3 Long Range. The range-topping M50 is more expensive than an equivalent Model 3 Performance. Like those rivals, the i4 is too pricey to qualify for the Government’s electric car grant, but PCP rates are fairly competitive throughout the range, thanks to solid resale values.  

As with all electric cars, the i4 makes a huge amount of sense for company car drivers because of the enormous benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax savings on offer. Private buyers, meanwhile, will spend a lot less on electricity to fuel an i4 than they might on petrol or diesel for a conventional car. 

If you go for the eDrive40, there are two trim levels to choose from: Sport and M Sport. Sport gets you 17in alloy wheels (18in wheels are a no-cost option), gloss-black exterior highlights, a sports leather steering wheel, sports seats, automatic air conditioning, a reversing camera and the curved infotainment display. M Sport introduces aggressive-looking wheels, an M Sport steering wheel, Alcantara highlights, an M Sport spoiler and grey exterior highlights.  

The M50 gets 19in wheels, adaptive M suspension, M sport brakes, a ‘gurney flap’ rear spoiler, a head-up display and lots of driving assistant functions. You can also add to this with a number of packages – we would recommend the reasonably priced Comfort Pack that introduces a heated steering wheel, comfort access and front seat lumbar support. 

Euro NCAP has yet to safety test the i4, but we suspect it would perform very well. That’s because the BMW 3 Series saloon it's closely related to scored the full five-star rating. It’s too early to be sure how reliable the i4 will be, but BMW finished in 13th place out of 30 manufacturers in our 2021 What Car? Reliability Survey. That’s above every premium brand excepts Lexus.

BMW i4 2021 interior infotainment

Overview

The BMW i4 is fast (especially so in M50 guise), comfortable and extremely hushed at high speeds. Factor in a decent range, a great infotainment system and a plush interior and it's a compelling alternative to a Tesla Model 3. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that the Model 3 comes with a significantly better-charging network – crucial if you cover a lot of motorway miles.

  • Brilliant performance
  • Impressive official range
  • Class-leading infotainment
  • Relatively expensive to buy outright
  • M50 not as sharp as Tesla Model 3 Performance
  • BMW lacks Tesla’s world-beating charging infrastructure
New car deals
Save up to £1,890
Target Price from £53,480
Save up to £1,890
or from £669pm
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From £637pm