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For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Hyundai Sonata are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.
In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Sonata are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Sonata Limited has standard Reverse Collision-Avoidance Assist that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
The Sonata’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the Sonata and the 4 Series Gran Coupe have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Sonata the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 32 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The 4 Series Gran Coupe has not been tested, yet.
The Sonata comes with a full 5-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The 4 Series Gran Coupe’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 10,000 miles sooner.
Hyundai’s powertrain warranty covers the Sonata 6 years and 50,000 miles longer than BMW covers the 4 Series Gran Coupe. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 10 years or 100,000 miles. Coverage on the 4 Series Gran Coupe ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.
There are over 2 times as many Hyundai dealers as there are BMW dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Sonata’s warranty.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Hyundai vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Hyundai third in initial quality, above the industry average. With 31 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 20th, below the industry average.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Hyundai vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Hyundai 11 places higher in reliability than BMW.
On the EPA test cycle the Sonata SEL Plus/Limited turbo 4 cyl. gets better fuel mileage than the 430i Gran Coupe RWD (27 city/36 hwy vs. 23 city/34 hwy).
To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Hyundai Sonata uses regular unleaded gasoline. The 4 Series Gran Coupe requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.
In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Hyundai Sonata higher (5 to 7 out of 10) than the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe (3 to 7). This means the Sonata produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the 4 Series Gran Coupe every 15,000 miles.
The Sonata stops much shorter than the 4 Series Gran Coupe:
4 Series Gran Coupe
70 to 0 MPH
Car and Driver
For better traction, the Sonata SEL Plus/Limited’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 4 Series Gran Coupe (235/45R18 vs. 225/45R18).
The Sonata has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the 4 Series Gran Coupe; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Sonata’s wheelbase is 1.2 inches longer than on the 4 Series Gran Coupe (111.8 inches vs. 110.6 inches).
For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Sonata is 3 inches wider in the front and 1.5 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the 4 Series Gran Coupe.
For better maneuverability, the Sonata’s turning circle is 1.2 feet tighter than the 4 Series Gran Coupe’s (35.9 feet vs. 37.1 feet). The Sonata’s turning circle is 2.8 feet tighter than the 4 Series Gran Coupe xDrive’s (35.9 feet vs. 38.7 feet).
The Hyundai Sonata may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 550 to 600 pounds less than the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe.
The design of the Hyundai Sonata amounts to more than styling. The Sonata has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .27 Cd. That is lower than the 4 Series Gran Coupe (.29) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Sonata get better fuel mileage.
As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the Sonata Limited is quieter than the 430i Gran Coupe xDrive (37 vs. 40 dB).
Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Sonata a Large car, while the 4 Series Gran Coupe is rated a Compact.
The Sonata has 12.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the 4 Series Gran Coupe (104.4 vs. 92).
The Sonata has .1 inches more front headroom, 3.9 inches more front legroom, 3.1 inches more front shoulder room, .9 inches more rear headroom, 1.1 inches more rear legroom and 1.8 inches more rear shoulder room than the 4 Series Gran Coupe.
The Sonata SEL/SEL Plus/Limited has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
The Sonata Limited’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The Sonata’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The 4 Series Gran Coupe has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Sonata SEL/SEL Plus/Limited has standard extendable sun visors. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer extendable visors.
Standard air-conditioned seats in the Sonata Limited keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The 4 Series Gran Coupe doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
The Sonata Limited’s Remote Smart Parking Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, starting, stopping and changing direction automatically. Remote Smart Parking Assist will park and retrieve your car remotely: press a button and watch it park itself. This is ideal for tight locations. The 4 Series Gran Coupe’s automatic parking system requires operating the brakes and transmission to safely park and it doesn’t offer remote control parking.
According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Sonata is less expensive to operate than the 4 Series Gran Coupe because it costs $54 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Sonata than the 4 Series Gran Coupe, including $458 less for a water pump, $260 less for a muffler, $103 less for front brake pads, $344 less for a starter, $261 less for fuel injection, $434 less for front struts, $503 less for a timing belt/chain and $101 less for a power steering pump.
Consumer Reports® recommends the Hyundai Sonata, based on reliability, safety and performance.
The Hyundai Sonata outsold the BMW 4 Series by almost five to one during 2019.
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