2025 BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe and i4 EV Double Down on Dumping Buttons

But hey: At least the taillights now use lasers and the M440i is getting more power from a mild-hybrid system.

byJosé Rodríguez Jr|
BMW News photo


The BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe and BMW i4 are special outliers in BMW's taxonomy, as the two 4 Series models with four doors, rather than two. It's this duo that's getting a glow up for the 2025 model year, in a refresh that improves the M440i's powertrain (yay!) while reducing the number of physical buttons in the cabin (boo!).

On the design front, we're still waiting for BMW to trim the bucktoothed face of its iconic sports sedans, but it looks like that's not going to happen anytime soon. Instead, the automaker is reworking their headlights to make the all-electric 4 Series and Gran Coupe a little sleeker, as well as adding the new "Laserlight" tails on certain models.

The i4 M50 xDrive and M440i will get standard adaptive full-LED headlights, while they'll remain as options on other 4 Series models. Meanwhile, the Laserlights had debuted on the M4 CSL and were later added to the 4 Series Coupe. Now, higher grades of the i4 and Gran Coupe will also get the same rear clusters, which are made by illuminating a fiber optic bundle with laser diodes to create an impossibly thin and flowing effect.

The rest of the exterior will also receive a touch up, but the differences from the outgoing model are mostly skin-deep. The most appreciable changes will be in the lighting elements, as well as inside the cabin, where small but significant tweaks have firmly put BMW in the pro-touchscreen camp. Whereas certain automakers are choosing to go back to buttons, or embrace a healthy mix of the physical as well as digital, BMW says that these new sedans have been "optimized for touch control and natural language," and bury yet more functions behind the iDrive dial. In fact, the manufacturer specifically calls out in its press release that new, digitally-operated climate controls have enabled a further reduction in the number of physical inputs inside these 4 Series four-doors. Tsk, tsk, tsk.

But a midcycle refresh to the 4 Series would be incomplete without an update to the available powertrains. These updates are similar to the styling changes, yielding but small differences. The 3.0-liter inline-six mild-hybrid setup of the 2025 M440i will now make a total of 386 horsepower and 398 lb-ft of torque, good for an increase of 4 hp and 29 lb-ft compared to 2024 models.

The M440i is still using the same eight-speed automatic transmission as before, and 0-60 times have stayed flat for trims unequipped with all-wheel drive, coming in at 4.7 seconds. The 0-60 sprint of M440i models with xDrive is now 4.3 seconds, down from last year's 4.4 seconds. In other words, the difference is virtually nonexistent.

The four-cylinder engine of the 430i will now also benefit from the 48V mild-hybrid system that's used on the inline-six, although power figures have stayed flat relative to the prior model. The four-cylinder is likely to be more efficient since it can now operate on the Miller cycle, but output is still 255 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Additionally, the combustion-engined models will get slightly bigger tailpipes that have grown from last year's 3.5 inches to 4 inches in diameter.

All in all, the differences here are pretty small, but that makes sense given that this is your routine refresh and not the introduction of a new generation. The styling and mechanical adjustments are modest, but the interior updates point to the direction the German automaker is headed in with heavy digitization. Functions are getting buried behind a screen, or, worse still, behind spoken prompts. That's a big change hidden behind a cascade of smaller ones for these sedans.

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