510hp and 650Nm straight-six twin-turbo with M xDrive all-wheel drive. 0-100km/h in just 3.7 seconds, and 0-200km/h in 13.1 seconds. $563,888 with COE at the time of this article. These are the headline figures of the topless version of BMW's bonkers M4, now with sky's-the-limit convertible soft top.
But why a drop-top M car? Well, given how there are buyers who want to sometimes just cruise lazily and enjoy the open air while at it, a convertible M4 makes sense. It's still only got two doors, for those who don't want four, and the roof opens up in just 18 seconds, allowing occupants access to open-top motoring on-demand. Behold...
With top down, boot space is 300-litres, growing to 385-litres with the roof up. Not bad for a convertible.
Externally, flared wheel arches, M side grills, forged 19-inch and 20-inch rims fore and aft respectively, and that controversial front grille all combine to give the game away that this is an M4 sans fixed coupe roof.
Even the rear-end is unmistakably M4, with that black diffuser, quad tailpipes, sculpted rear bumper and haunches. For those, like this author, who hanker after carbon-fibre, an optional Carbon exterior package is also available to take one's M4 Convertible game to the next level.
Despite being a drop-top, the M4 Competition Convertible is capable of track-day duties, with its cooling and oil-supply systems being beefed up accordingly. One thing's for sure, one will get a good earful of that exhaust's note as revs climb and the engine wails all the way up to its 7,200rpm redline. Take it from this motorcyclist - it will be a more visceral experience for sure.
See those svelte seats? If you're planning to go to the track, spec those optional carbon buckets to hold you in place. You'll be glad that you did.
While out on track, the M-specific xDrive system can be tweaked to suit one's needs, with 4WD Sport sending more power to the rear wheels, and 2WD mode sending power rearwards exclusively together with stability systems completely turned off. All of this happens via an eight-speed automatic transmission with flappy paddles.
In case one's balking at the idea of taking a convertible to track, know that the M4 Competition Convertible has been stiffened up to compensate for the lack of a fixed roof, courtesy of various chassis braces. Also helping things along are adaptive dampers.
Also of interest is two brake pedal feel settings, allowing the driver to fine-tune brake feel to their personal preference. If one prefers not to turn off the stability controls altogether, one can tinker with ten traction control settings also.
Coming back to more mundane everyday decisions, BMW describe this soft-top M4 as having four seats. While that may technically be true, in this author's humble estimation, it looks more like a 2-squeeze-2 situation instead. We'll know more if and when we actually get behind the wheel of an M4 Competition Convertible, and I shall strive to do whatever it takes to get taller-than-me Jon to (attempt to) sit in the back seat. Cue echoing evil laughs from Dr. Evil.
Hopefully more to come... Watch this space.