2024 BMW i4 xDrive40 Review: Balanced Bimmer

Kyle Patrick
by Kyle Patrick

Love It

Leave It

More power, no major hit to range

Low-key cabin doesn't always wow

Comfortable and quick

eDrive40 is slighty more fun

We kinda dig the looks now...

...but maybe you don't

We had to make sure about the 2024 BMW i4 xDrive40.

When I first drove this latest version of BMW’s most approachable current electric model, I dubbed it “ best version of the best small EV luxury four-door out there.” That was in the prepped and manicured confines of a BMW-hosted test event in South Carolina, however. Could the all-paw i4 hack it in the middle of winter, hundreds of miles north? Over the course of a week, the all-electric 4 Series still impressed, securing its status as the best choice in the lineup.

What’s new?

As I covered in the aforementioned first drive, the big mechanical change here over the already excellent eDrive40 is the addition of a second electric motor acting on the front axle. Combined output now stands at a healthy 396 horsepower, with instant access to 443 pound-feet of torque. An 80.7-kilowatt-hour (usable) battery pack provides the juice, and is capable of a maximum DC charging rate of 205 kW.

The xDrive40 is now the range champ of the i4 range, capable of 307 miles (494 kilometers) on a single charge with the standard 18-inch wheels. This one is running on 19s wrapped in winter rubber, however. The wheel change knocks that down to 279 miles (449 km); the tires, unknown.

Another change since the last i4 we tested on our home turf: iDrive 8.5, which has rolled out across most of the current BMW lineup right now. The infotainment evolution adds important usability changes.

The i4 is otherwise visually the same as ever, a sealed-grille, exhaustless variation of the 4 Series Gran Coupe. While the gas models have seen a facelift—Life Cycle Impulse (LCI) in BMW-speak—the i4 has yet to change.

Winter buddy

Imagine my shock when, upon pick up of the i4, the digital instrument cluster was indicating a full-charge range of barely over 185 miles (300 km). This is an adaptive estimate however, based on recent use. Maybe whoever drove it last gave it a good workout before plugging in, as a sort of manual battery pre-condition. Whatever the case, as soon as we popped onto the highway the i4’s range didn’t just hold steady—it grew. Down to 92-percent state of charge, the i4 was suggesting 211 mi (340 km) of range, which suggested around 230 miles (370 km) before it would need a plug.

Still down on the official figure, but a much closer amount. As it turned out, the i4 would be doing a disproportionate amount of highway miles, another EV range-killer. Mix that with a week of fluctuating temperatures that saw freezing rain one day and a full thaw the next, and it’s of little surprise the i4 needed to charge a little shy of 217 miles (350 km).

But the i4 is more than a single-charge range; this is a premium car from a brand with a certain sort of reputation. The i4 is athletic, with a confident balance through corners and at speed. The rear air suspension calms all but the absolute worst bumps. The steering is typical BMW light on the normal drive mode and artificially hefty on Sport. But like the other i4s, the xDrive40 is lighter on its feet than its chunky curb weight suggests.

Power is plentiful at any road speed. The M50 is quicker, sure, but there’s little between the two in daily situations. Better still, BMW has dialed in its regenerative braking very well, with natural pedal feel and aggressive yet predictable deceleration. I still love seeing just how much power is going back into the battery, too. Turn on those Iconic Sounds; audible cues are helpful during spirited driving.

Welcoming cabin and tech

The 4 Series cabin holds few surprises in BMW terms. The clean and refined dashboard design is super-simple to navigate, although it earns demerit points for skipping physical climate and audio favorite buttons. Seat comfort is high, and without the more aggressive bolsters of the M50, they’re more accommodating for more people. I’m a little surprised to see this i4 is still rocking a Sensatec cabin, but it’s a convincing faux leather. I know BMW calls the i4 a five-seater, and you could technically do it with the solid amount of legroom, but the sloping roofline can make it a tougher fit for adults or taller teens.

iDrive 8.5 takes the better parts of the previous setup—good looks, quick response times, an accurate voice assistant—and cuts down on the clutter. The left-side tiles make it easy to quickly access the most common features, but usefully keeps navigation on-screen at all times. Better still, BMW remains one of the few brands to allow third-party navigation from the (wireless) Apple CarPlay and Android Auto to populate the instrument cluster. Pair that with a useful head-up display and the BMW’s tech suite is powerful and easy to use.

Dollars and sense

A 2024 i4 xDrive40 can be yours for $62,595 ($72,380 CAD) including destination. This Canadian-spec tester does that most German of things and collects a fair few checks on the options list. The single largest contributor is the Premium Enhanced Package ($9,250 CAD), which bundles the faux-leather dashboard, parking assistant, drive recorder, head-up display, and more together, while American buyers can pick and choose more individual options. Alongside the M Sport Pro and Advanced Driver Assistance packages, plus a handful of individual options, the i4 rings up at $87,480 CAD. The closest equivalent US build is $71,370.

A Tesla Model 3 Performance undercuts the BMW and outpaces it in a straight line. Good luck matching the quality and feel of the cabin however, not to mention the ride quality. Beyond that there aren’t many direct competitors. Well, except the M440i, if you’d prefer BMW’s sweet inline-six. Just not in Canada, where the gas model is a rare special edition only.

Verdict: 2024 BMW i4 xDrive40 Review

A week of winter did little to dull my admiration for the 2024 BMW i4 xDrive40. Pleasant to drive and be in, the xDrive40 adds power and poise for those who want a mid-level EV four-door. It leaves enough room for the range-topping M50 to maintain its sledgehammer appeal, but for my money, the xDrive40 is a better, more well-rounded offering.

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2024 BMW i4 xDrive40


9 / 10


9 / 10

Handling and Drivability

8 / 10

Passenger Comfort

8 / 10

Ride Quality

4 / 5

Exterior Style

4 / 5

Interior Style and Quality

8 / 10


9 / 10


4 / 5


4 / 5


7 / 10

Emotional Appeal

9 / 10


83 / 100

2024 BMW i4 xDrive40


2x electric motors

Battery Capacity:

80.7 kWh


396 hp, 443 hp


1AT, e-AWD

US Fuel Economy (MPGe):


CAN Fuel Economy (Le/100 km):



279 mi / 449 km

Starting Price (USD):

$62,595 (inc. dest.)

As-Tested Price (USD):

$71,370 (est, inc. dest.)

Starting Price (CAD):

$72,380 (inc. dest.)

As-Tested Price (CAD):

$87,480 (inc. dest.)

Kyle Patrick
Kyle Patrick

Kyle began his automotive obsession before he even started school, courtesy of a remote control Porsche and various LEGO sets. He later studied advertising and graphic design at Humber College, which led him to writing about cars (both real and digital). He is now a proud member of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC), where he was the Journalist of the Year runner-up for 2021.

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