Luxury Sedans Compared: 2021 BMW 4 Series vs 2021 BMW 5 Series

When it comes to luxury sedans, BMW has always been a front-runner. Forbes has even named the 2021 BMW 5 Series as one of the best luxury cars worldwide, labeling it the “definitive sports sedan.” However, the 5 Series may not fit everyone’s idea of the perfect luxury vehicle. If you’re searching for a combination of comfort and distinctively stylish design, the 2021 BMW 4 Series might be just what you’re looking for. In the following paragraphs, we’ll compare the 2021 BMW 4 Series and the 2021 BMW 5 Series to determine which luxury sedan suits your needs best. And when you’re done reading, we invite you to visit our showroom at South Bay BMW to experience these extraordinary vehicles in person.

Design & Utility

The 2021 BMW 4 Series boasts a fresh redesign, featuring bold exterior styling, 18″ V-spoke wheels, Air Breathers, and the appealing Shadowline exterior trim. Choose a vibrant body color like Sunset Orange or opt for the mysterious Black Sapphire for a sleek look. On the other hand, the 2021 BMW 5 Series offers a visually refreshing update, showcasing 18″ W-spoke reflex silver wheels, a Chrome-line exterior trim, and trapezoidal exhaust tips for a sporty yet elegant appearance. Both sedans provide a standard power moonroof and power-folding, heated side mirrors. However, only the 4 Series offers an available power tailgate, ensuring easier access to your cargo area.

Speaking of cargo, both luxury sedans provide ample trunk space for groceries, luggage, or sports equipment. The 2021 4 Series offers 12 cubic feet of space, while the 2021 5 Series offers 2 cubic feet more. Both vehicles offer spacious headroom, but the 5 Series provides more rear legroom and shoulder room for up to five passengers, whereas the 4 Series seats up to four.

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Comfort & Convenience

The cabins of both BMW luxury sedans are filled with premium materials and cutting-edge technology to guarantee a comfortable and convenient driving experience. The 2021 4 Series offers a stunning Open Pore Fine Wood Oak Grain trim and power front sport seats upholstered in SensaTec. In contrast, the 2021 5 Series features Fineline Ridge Wood trim and standard 16-way power front seats, with multi-color adjustable ambient lighting setting the perfect mood. Upgrade to the 5 Series M550i xDrive, and you’ll enjoy 20-way multi-contour front seats with a three-stage heating function, along with premium Dakota leather upholstery. The 5 Series offers an extra layer of opulence with available ceramic controls, providing a rich, custom look and feel.

Staying connected inside the 2021 4 Series or 5 Series is effortless. Both come standard with the Connected Package Professional, a suite of technology that includes real-time traffic info, hazard preview, concierge service, and more. Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ capability are standard, as well as Bluetooth® for seamless audio streaming and hands-free calling. The 4 Series comes with LIve Cockpit Plus and an 8.8″ touchscreen as standard, while the 5 Series offers the Live Cockpit Pro with navigation as standard, along with a fully digital 12.3″ display. Both models offer available wireless charging, but only the 4 Series includes an available drive recorder, allowing you to replay any drive.


When it comes to performance, both the 2021 4 Series and the 2021 5 Series offer a range of exciting powertrains to choose from. The base engine in both models is a robust 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder. The 4 Series generates an impressive 255 horsepower, while the 5 Series delivers 248 horsepower. If you crave more power, upgrade to the 4 Series M440i xDrive, which features a 3.0L turbocharged V6 engine producing a robust 382 horsepower. The M sport differential, M sport brakes, and M sport suspension come standard on the M440i, enhancing its performance capabilities.

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The 2021 5 Series offers three additional engine options, starting with the 5 Series 540i and its 3.0L turbocharged V6 generating a solid 335 horsepower. For the ultimate driving experience, there’s the 5 Series M550i xDrive. This thrilling sedan houses a 4.4L turbocharged M TwinPower V8 engine, delivering a thunderous output of 532 horsepower. Equipped with a sport exhaust system and Adaptive M Suspension with electronically controlled dampers, the M550i guarantees an exhilarating ride. Enhanced driving comfort is available with Integral Active Steering, and greater agility and precise response can be achieved with the optional Adaptive M Suspension Professional.

For those seeking a greener luxury sedan, BMW proudly offers the 2021 5 Series 530e, an efficient plug-in hybrid model with a combined horsepower output of 288. No matter which BMW model you choose, you’ll experience pure power and exhilarating performance.


Safety is BMW’s top priority, and it’s evident in all their vehicles. The 2021 4 Series has been awarded five stars across the board by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the highest honor they bestow. This is due, in part, to the rain-sensing windshield wipers, adaptive brake lights, and programmable LED daytime running lights that come standard. For enhanced visibility, Icon Adaptive LED headlights with LaserLight are available. The 4 Series also features standard Active Driving Assistant, which includes Forward Collision Warning, Lane Departure Warning, Speed Limit Info, and more.

Although the 2021 5 Series has not been tested by the NHTSA, it is equipped with high-quality safety features comparable to its sibling. Standard features include Icon Adaptive full LED headlights and the Active Driving Assistant suite of technology. For extra peace of mind, the Professional array is available, offering Traffic Jam Assist, Evasion Aid, and more. Both the 4 Series and the 5 Series feature standard Fatigue and Focus Alert, which alerts you if the system detects drowsy or distracted driving.

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Find Your Perfect Luxury Sedan at South Bay BMW

Let South Bay BMW help you find your dream car today. Whether you desire a luxury sedan focused on style and elegance, a sports sedan packed with verve and excitement, or an efficient plug-in hybrid model, BMW has precisely what you’re looking for. Visit our showroom in Torrance, CA, to speak with our friendly BMW experts, or contact us to schedule a test drive. Experience the pleasure of driving a BMW luxury sedan firsthand at South Bay BMW.

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