Every time we come away from driving a BMW automobile, we are left marveling at their refinement and sophistication. From
the exceptionally fluid operation of its engines, to the way its suspension systems absorb pavement irregularities while simultaneously offering spirited handling, driving a BMW is an experience everyone with a driver’s license should have at some point.
For most people, if you say BMW, they’ll envision the company’s highly successful 3 Series model. In the past, the 3 Series was offered in coupe, convertible, sedan, and sport wagon body styles. For the 2014 model year, the coupe and convertible were given a new nomenclature; they are now referred to as the BMW 4 Series. Thus, the subject of this review, the 2014 BMW 435i Cabriolet, replaces the 2013 BMW 335i Cabriolet.
on the same new design applied to the 2014 3 Series sedans, the 4 Series Coupe and Cabriolet are also larger than the 2013 models they replace. Additionally, ride comfort is given more consideration in these new models. These new BMWs go over the road in a manner wholly befitting the prestigious luxury cars they are. However, they also deliver handling on par with the world’s finest driver’s cars. If you’re into both having and eating your cake, you’ll want to give this new BMW 435i an opportunity to worm its way into your heart.
For the 2014 model year, BMW is offering the 435i Cabriolet in two states of trim. These are base and Individual Line, that latter costing $1,200 over the car’s $67,400 starting price (plus $2,095 in freight charges) allowing for unique exterior paint choices, additional chrome trim, 19-inch V-spoke aluminum rims, front fog lights,
special doorsill trim, Walknappa leather upholstery, and unique interior wood accent choices. Our Individual Line test car featured eleven slats in its kidney grille with high-gloss chrome trim, as well as the beautiful eleven-spoke 19-inch alloy wheel set. The chrome theme continued inside the car, along with high gloss wood accents and prominent stitching in the leather seats. Taken all together, the Individual Line package adds an extra air of elegance to the sleek wedge-shaped automobile.
M Performance I and II packages are more aggressively suspended (or in the case of the Individual Line there’s a separate “Performance Package for Individual Line” with the Adaptive M Suspension and Variable Sport Steering), items that are available on the $1,700 M Performance I package along with M Sport brakes and performance tires, whereas the $2,500 M Performance II package adds an M Power
Kit to the engine and M Performance Exhaust. Other available packages include the $4,600 Executive Package that adds proximity sensing remote access with pushbutton ignition, adaptive headlights, auto-dimming exterior mirrors, lumbar support, navigation, Harmon/Kardon audio, satellite radio, a universal remote, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera and alarm system. The $2,800 Executive package adds an air collar for keeping your neck warm, surround view for a 360-degree visual while backing up, lane departure and collision warning, high-beam assist, and head-up display. Lastly, BMW’s $850 ConnectedDrive package adds real-time traffic information, the Internet, BMW Online and BMW Apps, Convenience Telephony with extended smartphone connectivity, remote services, and concierge services. Plenty of standalone options are available too.
of the trim package you select, power for the 2014 BMW 435i Cabriolet comes from a turbocharged 3.0-litre inline six-cylinder engine. This powerplant is rated at 300 horsepower and 300 ft-lbs of torque, although it feels considerably more powerful. A crisp shifting eight-speed automatic transmission with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters is offered as standard equipment. A six-speed manual is also available as a no-cost option. Our test car was fitted with the automatic. BMW quotes a zero to 100 km/h sprint of 5.6 seconds with the manual and 5.3 with the auto, and top speed is limited to 210 kilometres per hour (or 240 with optional tires). Fuel economy with the automatic transmission and rear-wheel drive (yes, xDrive all-wheel drive is an option) is rated at 9.7 L/100km in the city, 6.0 on the highway, and 8.0 combined.
Underway, the chief characterizing feature of the 435i Cabriolet is its sheer and utter
competence-in every dynamic situation. The BMW doesn’t roll down the street so much as it seemingly glides. Because of this, you do have to be mindful of the speedometer. This car is always going faster than it feels like it is.
Standard features include the power-retractable folding hardtop, a wind blocker, xenon headlights, power adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with a tilt-and-telescoping column, dual-zone automatic climate control, BMW’s iDrive comfort and convenience interface, and Bluetooth audio streaming and telephone connectivity.
The folding hardtop disappears into the trunk in 20 seconds, and can also be operated using the remote. The roof can be retracted while the car is in motion too-at speeds of up to 18 km/h. To make loading and unloading the trunk easier when
the top is stowed, the BMW features a “loading assistance” function. At the touch of a button, the top raises several inches-while remaining folded-to enable the placement and removal of items.
Don’t look for the wind blocker in the trunk, you won’t find it there. It is housed in a storage compartment inside the rear seatback. Buttons next to the rear headrests release the seatback to fold forward to reveal the wind blocker. The seatback is lined with felt material, making it suitable for carrying ancillary cargo. During our testing, we used it to transport additional items we’d have normally stowed in the trunk. This enabled us to take extra cargo while retaining the use of the folding hardtop. With the wind blocker in place, the back seat won’t accommodate passengers anyway, so this was a nice solution.
With its exceptional blend of comfort, driving pleasure, utility, and year-round usability, the 2014 BMW 435i Cabriolet is definitely worth considering if you’re thinking of purchasing a convertible.
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