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Car of the Year Awards 2024: Coupé/Convertible of the Year

The best coupé and convertibles offer more than just eye-catching looks. We’re looking for cars that deliver an enjoyable driving experience, a practical interior and good value...

WINNER: Coupé/Convertible of the Year

BMW 4 Series 420i M Sport (Pro Pack)

COTY 2024 logo with Motoreasy

Not very many years ago, removing the roof from a coupé to create a convertible would turn what felt like an oak chest of drawers into a soggy cardboard box. We’re talking about structural integrity; it’s incredibly important, determining how a car handles, rides and feels. It helps the BMW 4 Series Coupé to be the sharpest car in its class to drive, and its topless BMW 4 Series Convertible sibling is very close behind.

In fact, without driving them back to back, you’d never know the difference. The steering is still razor-sharp and the convertible shares the coupé’s fabulous cornering poise. It takes a sizeable pothole to remind you that the front and rear windows aren’t linked by solid metal (you’ll feel it as a shimmy through the steering wheel), and even this really doesn’t detract from the fun – especially when the roof is down on a sunny day.

BMW 4 Series Coupé rear

Speaking of roofs, the 4 Series Convertible’s is a good one. When it’s up, it does an exceptional job of keeping noise out; you’ll notice only a little wind rustle from around the side windows, so you might as well be in the coupé. And when it’s down, the 4 Series is the ideal car for those who prefer to protect their hair from that candyfloss-in-a-tornado look; if you keep the side windows up, turbulence is minimal.

The engine line-up is the same in both versions; all are superb and some are hugely powerful, but you don’t really need to look beyond the 181bhp turbocharged 2.0-litre petrol unit that powers the entry-level 420i. True, the convertible is slightly slower from 0-62mph than the lighter coupé, but the 420i in either bodystyle will be plenty quick enough for most buyers. And anyway, the fact that it’s so much more economical than the more powerful engines means you can enjoy yourself without every mile costing a fortune.

BMW 4 Series Convertible interior

Although the 4 Series isn’t quite a match for the rival Audi A5 Coupé when it comes to interior quality, the margins are small, and it’s better built than the pricier Mercedes CLE. The rear seats are usable for adults, with decent leg room, but the boot is slightly smaller than those of its main rivals.

To experience the 420i at its very best, you’ll need the optional M Sport Pro Pack, because it includes adaptive suspension. Without it, you notice every bump; it isn’t truly uncomfortable, but it’s far from relaxing. The adaptive system’s Comfort mode, though, brings extra plushness, yet it doesn’t come at the expense of driving pleasure. And regardless of which mode you’re in, the 4 Series’ sharp handling means you can have more fun on your favourite road than you’d have in an A5 or CLE.

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See all of our 2024 Car of the Year Awards winners >>