The all-new BMW 4 Series has been spied testing for the very first time. While it looks to inherit many of its styling cues from the forthcoming 3 Series, these pictures show it will switch the current car’s metal hard-top for a folding fabric roof in an attempt to lower weight. 

This follows in the footsteps of the recently revealed BMW Z4 roadster, which will also switch to a textile roof this time around. It’ll help lower emissions and improve fuel economy, while also limiting the amount of space it requires when folded into the boot.

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BMW’s all-new 3 Series saloon (codenamed G20) will be revealed at the Paris Motor Show next week. The 4 Series Coupe and Convertible aren’t due until 2019, but these images show the two-door models will share their sleek looks with the saloon. That means the same sharp, swept-back headlights, long bonnet and sculpted bumpers, alongside similarly sculpted flanks, a flat rear-end, and slim LED tail-lamps.

The interior will be carried over with few changes, too. As such, the 4 Series will most likely use BMW’s latest 10.2-inch digital dials, alongside a widescreen infotainment iDrive system pre-loaded with sat-nav, real-time traffic info and Apple CarPlay connectivity. 

Under the bonnet, the 4 Series Convertible is expected to carry over only the more powerful 3 Series engines. The entry-level units will likely be badged 420i and 420d, using tweaked versions of the current car’s four-cylinder petrol and diesel units. Above this will sit the 430i, as well as the six-cylinder 430d and 440i.

It’s unlikely the lesser three-cylinder 3 Series engines will feature in the sportier Convertible, however. At this time, it’s unclear whether the 4 Series will adopt the 3’s forthcoming plug-in hybrid and full-EV powertrains, though a flagship M4 is a given.

We’ll learn more about the forthcoming BMW 4 Series Coupe and Convertible in the coming months, shortly after the 3 Series debuts at Paris. Expect the drop-top version to go on sale next summer, priced from around £40,000.

Click here for all the latest on the new BMW 3 Series

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