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Used test: BMW i4 vs Porsche Taycan interiors

The BMW i4 and the Porsche Taycan are both stunningly quick electric cars. And you can now buy either one used for a fraction of its new price, but which one should you go for?...

BMW i4 interior dashboard


Driving position, visibility, build quality, practicality

The driving position in the Porsche Taycan is spot on. You sit low and feel cocooned, while the steering wheel and pedals line up well with your body. The supportive yet comfortable driver’s seat has eight-way, electric adjustment as standard, while our test car had the optional-from-new 14-way power adjustment, including for lumbar support.

You sit higher in the BMW i4, so it doesn't feel as sporty. However, the seats are slightly more cushioned than the Taycan's and similarly supportive. It's just a pity that, as in the Taycan, there's no adjustable lumbar support unless the original owner paid extra to get it.

Porsche Taycan 2021 dashboard

While the Taycan is fine for visibility, it is easier to see out of the i4, because it has thinner windscreen pillars and a taller rear window. The i4 also got front and rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera as standard from new. The Taycan gets both sets of sensors, but a camera was an extra £480.

It’s tricky to operate the Taycan's lower touchscreen without contorting your arm. It's also too easy to trigger something by mistake when you’re resting your elbow on the central armrest. And the infotainment system's layout is quite complicated, even though the touchscreen itself is crisp and responsive. The i4's system is simply better. It's easy to navigate and its physical rotary controller makes it a breeze to operate on the move.

BMW i4 interior back seats

The i4 offers good interior quality, too: most surfaces feel upmarket and it all seems well screwed together. That said, there are a couple of patches of hard, scratchy plastic – around the starter button, for instance – and if you've ever sat in a BMW 3 Series, you might be a little disappointed by how much the two cars share. As a result, the Taycan's interior still feels like a step up, being bespoke and even more lavish – perhaps unsurprisingly given the car cost considerably more to buy when new. 

The i4 and Taycan are closely matched on front leg room, and while the latter has more head room, you'd have to be very tall to notice. Similarly, there's almost nothing between the cars when it comes to rear space – which is to say passengers over six-foot tall will have their heads nudging the ceiling, but will have just enough leg room.

Porsche Taycan 2021 interior rear seats

Oddly, though, the Taycan doesn't get a middle rear seat unless the original owner forked forked out extra for it, and Porsche also charged its customers £366 for 40/20/40 split rear seats, whereas the i4 got these features as standard. 

We managed to fit five carry-on suitcases into the Taycan's main boot and one in the 'frunk' under the bonnet. The i4 lacks a front boot, but its rear one is roomy enough for seven suitcases. It also benefits from a hatchback-style tailgate that creates a larger boot opening than the Taycan's saloon-style bootlid.