BMW X4 review

Category: Coupe SUV

There are plenty of more practical SUVs, but few are as enjoyable to drive as the BMW X4

BMW X4 2022 front right tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 front right tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 rear left tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 interior dashboard
  • BMW X4 2022 interior rear seats
  • BMW X4 2022 interior infotainment
  • BMW X4 2022 right tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 front left tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 overhead view
  • BMW X4 2022 front right static
  • BMW X4 2022 rear left static
  • BMW X4 2022 headlight detail
  • BMW X4 2022 rear lights detail
  • BMW X4 2022 interior front seats
  • BMW X4 2022 interior detail
  • BMW X4 2022 boot open
  • BMW X4 2022 front right tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 rear left tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 interior dashboard
  • BMW X4 2022 interior rear seats
  • BMW X4 2022 interior infotainment
  • BMW X4 2022 right tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 front left tracking
  • BMW X4 2022 overhead view
  • BMW X4 2022 front right static
  • BMW X4 2022 rear left static
  • BMW X4 2022 headlight detail
  • BMW X4 2022 rear lights detail
  • BMW X4 2022 interior front seats
  • BMW X4 2022 interior detail
  • BMW X4 2022 boot open
What Car?’s X4 deals
New car deals
Save up to £6,291
Target Price from £51,412
Save up to £6,291
or from £543pm
Swipe to see used car deals
Nearly new deals
From £49,250

Introduction

What Car? says...

Some people want a car that doesn’t attract too much attention, and if that sounds like you, steer clear of the BMW X4. This large SUV really stands out from the crowd thanks to its combination of bulky go-anywhere presence and a bit of coupé curviness.

It's a formula that's proved pretty trendy. Indeed, the bigger BMW X6 set the ball rolling, offering luxury SUV devotees a more streamlined alternative to the BMW X5.

Likewise, under the X4's sleek body you'll find the same platform as the BMW X3 has – and that's a highly accomplished large SUV in its own right.

The X4 aims to be not only be the better looking version (we’ll leave that to you to decide), but also more entertaining to drive than it's stablemate, although those swoopy lines do make it a less practical choice.

Other premium brands have gone down the same road as BMW by taking an existing SUV model and lowering sections of the roofline. For example, there's the Audi Q5 Sportback and the Mercedes GLC Coupé with similarly slinky styling. Then there's the Porsche Macan – a car that had sporty looks from the start.

So, is the BMW X4 the best of these large, coupé-styled SUVs? Well, we've driven it, and over the next few pages of this review we'll tell you how it compares for performance and handling, comfort, interior quality, practicality and more. For those who are power hungry, there's also a performance-focused version – you can read about that in our full BMW X4 M Competition review.

If any of these models turn your head (or, indeed, if you plan to buy any model), you can check for the lowest price by searching our free What Car? New Car Buying service. It has lots of new large SUV deals.

Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

In an effort to make the X4 even better to drive than the already impressive BMW X3, BMW has firmed up its suspension and pushed its rear wheels farther apart. And, sure enough, it handles remarkably well for such a tall car, turning into corners swiftly and suffering from little body lean. A Porsche Macan has more communicative steering, but the X4’s still offers plenty of reassurance.

You might reasonably expect the downside of such a sporty drive to be poor ride comfort, but in reality the X4 is good at absorbing bumps and potholes – at least on the optional adaptive set-up fitted to our test car. You do feel the car shimmying around beneath you over scruffy roads, but it rarely thumps or jolts.

BMW X4 image
Skip the showroom and find out more online

There are three diesel diesel engines to choose from and one petrol. We’ve yet to try the range-topping 355bhp M40i petrol and 335bhp M40d diesel, but they're likely to feel stonkingly fast: they both get from 0-62mph in an identical 4.9sec. For most people, the cheaper 187bhp 2.0-litre 20d model will make more sense.

The 20d is still fast enough at 7.9sec 0-62mph, and has four-wheel drive and a super-slick eight-speed automatic gearbox as standard. Plus, it's quieter than the equivalent Mercedes GLC Coupé engine and sends next to no vibration back through the controls.

Wind noise is well suppressed, and while there’s some road noise at speed, it's not too intrusive.

A halfway-house 3.0-litre diesel with 276bhp is also available. It can see off the 0-62mph run in 5.7sec, and provide oodles of torque in all driving situations. To read about the quickest version, see our BMW X4 M Competition review.

BMW X4 2022 rear left tracking

Interior

The interior layout, fit and finish

The X4's dashboard is almost identical to the X3’s, but that's no bad thing, because it means all of the materials in prominent positions look and feel very classy. Standard ambient lighting adds to the wow factor at night, while BMW’s iDrive infotainment system sets the standard for ease of use.

The lofty driving position that attracts many people to SUVs is present and correct. What’s more, the driver’s seat is supportive and lines up nicely with the pedals and steering wheel, meaning you don’t have to sit at an awkward angle.

It’s a bit stingy of BMW to charge extra for adjustable lumbar support when you get four-way electric adjustment as standard on all Audi Q5 Sportback models. It's a relatively cheap option on the X4, though, and one we’d definitely recommend.

By contrast, front and rear parking sensors, along with a reversing camera are standard across the range. And they’re welcome, given the big blind-spots created by the steep angle of the rear window and the thick pillars surrounding it.

Forward visibility is much better, with relatively narrow windscreen pillars combined with the elevated seating to make it easy to judge roundabouts and T-junctions.

BMW X4 2022 interior dashboard

Passenger & boot space

How it copes with people and clutter

There’s loads of space in the front of the BMW X4 with plenty of useful cubbies inside the car, especially up front. Rear leg room impresses, too, although the plunging coupé-like roofline forces six-footers to slouch in the rear seats or sit with their heads pushed up against the roof lining.

At the same time, a tall central rear seat makes it a squeeze to get three people in the back. The rear door openings are a little on the small side, so getting in and out could be easier.

On the other hand, the well-shaped boot is big enough to swallow several large suitcases with ease, while the rear seats lie flat when folded down to make it easy to load longer items. The fact that those rear seats split in a 40/20/40 configuration adds to the versatility.  

A standard electric tailgate helps to take the strain out of having to lift what is a sizeable door.

BMW X4 2022 interior rear seats

Buying & owning

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

If you’re buying a BMW X4 with cash, it will cost you several thousand pounds more than an equivalent BMW X3. But, perhaps more importantly, it’s also pricier than its closest rival, the Audi Q5 Sportback. There are deals to be had, though, not least if you use our New Car Deals pages.

Running costs are more impressive: the 20d model averages around 50mpg in official economy tests, compared with the mid-40s economy of the most efficient Q5 Sportback and Mercedes GLC Coupé.

The X4 didn't feature in the 2022 What Car? Reliability Survey but the mechanically identical X3 did, with petrol and diesel versions coming in second and sixth respectively, out of the 26 entries in the large SUV category. That places it ahead of key rivals such as the Audi Q5 and Mercedes GLC. BMW comfortably beat Audi and Mercedes in the car makers league table, finishing 16th out of 32 brands. BMW provides a three-year/unlimited mileage warranty.

Even entry-level M Sport-spec X4s come with most of the equipment you’re likely to want, including leather upholstery, satellite navigation, cruise control, automatic emergency braking (AEB) and adaptive LED headlights. Upgrading to M40d and M40i brings larger alloy wheels, bigger brakes, adaptive suspension and more aggressive styling.

In terms of safety, Euro NCAP testers gave the X4 the same five-star rating as the X3. It performed similarly to the Audi Q5 for adult protection and safety tech, but the Q5 edges ahead in terms of child safety and causing the least amount of damage to vulnerable road users. As well as AEB, all versions of the X4 come with lane-departure warning and speed-limit assist.

For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here

BMW X4 2022 interior infotainment
At a glance
New car deals
Save up to £6,291
Target Price from £51,412
Save up to £6,291
or from £543pm
Swipe to see used car deals
Nearly new deals
From £49,250
RRP price range £54,035 - £68,330
Number of trims (see all)3
Number of engines (see all)4
Available fuel types (which is best for you?)diesel, petrol
MPG range across all versions 31.4 - 46.3
Available doors options 5
Warranty 3 years / No mileage cap
Company car tax at 20% (min/max) £3,732 / £4,934
Company car tax at 40% (min/max) £7,463 / £9,869
Available colours