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Compare the2022 BMW 4 Series ConvertibleVS 2021 Ford Mustang

2022 BMW 4 Series Convertible
2021 Ford Mustang

Safety

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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the BMW 4 Series Convertible have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision. The Ford Mustang doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The 4 Series Convertible’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Mustang doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The 4 Series Convertible’s standard pretensioning seatbelts also sense rear collisions and remove slack from the seatbelts to help protect the occupants from whiplash and other injuries. The Mustang doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The 4 Series Convertible has a standard PostCrash iBrake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Mustang doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The 4 Series Convertible offers optional Active Park Distance Control that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Mustang doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

The 4 Series Convertible offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The Mustang doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The 4 Series Convertible has standard Park Distance Control to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or in front of their vehicle. The Mustang doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

Both the 4 Series Convertible and the Mustang have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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The 4 Series Convertible comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Mustang’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year or 14,000 miles sooner.

The 4 Series Convertible’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Mustang’s (12 vs. 5 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the 4 Series Convertible for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Mustang.

Reliability

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The battery on the 4 Series Convertible is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the 4 Series Convertible’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Mustang’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2021 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 22nd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ January 2021 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 10 places higher in reliability than Ford.

Fuel Economy and Range

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Regenerative brakes improve the 4 Series Convertible’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Mustang doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stop lights the 4 Series Convertible’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. If the conditions warrant or the driver wishes, the system can be manually disabled at any time for the duration of a trip. The Mustang doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the BMW 4 Series Convertible higher (5 to 7 out of 10) than the Ford Mustang (3 to 5). This means the 4 Series Convertible produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Mustang every 15,000 miles.

Transmission and Drivetrain

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The BMW 4 Series Convertible comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Mustang.

All wheel drive, available in the 4 Series Convertible, provides the best traction for acceleration in wet, dry, and icy conditions. In corners, all wheel drive allows both outside wheels to provide power, balancing the car. This allows for better handling. The Ford Mustang is not available with all wheel drive.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the 4 Series Convertible’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the Mustang:

4 Series Convertible

Mustang

Front Rotors

13 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

12.6 inches

Tires and Wheels

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The 430i’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Mustang’s standard 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the 4 Series Convertible has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Mustang.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 4 Series Convertible can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Mustang doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the 4 Series Convertible’s wheelbase is 5.1 inches longer than on the Mustang (112.2 inches vs. 107.1 inches).

The 4 Series Convertible’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.9% to 50.1%) than the Mustang’s (52.9% to 47.1%). This gives the 4 Series Convertible more stable handling and braking.

Passenger Space

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The 4 Series Convertible has 4.8 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Mustang Convertible (84 vs. 79.2).

Cargo Capacity

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The 4 Series Convertible’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Mustang Convertible doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the 4 Series Convertible’s available trunk can be opened and closed just by waving your foot, leaving your hands completely free. The Mustang doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Servicing Ease

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The 4 Series Convertible uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Mustang uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that BMW service is better than Ford. J.D. Power ranks BMW 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 33% lower rating, Ford is ranked 25th.

Ergonomics

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The 4 Series Convertible offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed, tachometer, warning and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Mustang doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The 4 Series Convertible’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Mustang 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.

If the windows are left open on the 4 Series Convertible the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Mustang can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

In case of a sudden change of weather, the 4 Series Convertible offers an optional remote convertible top that can be raised from a distance to protect the interior of the vehicle from damage. On a hot day the 4 Series Convertible offers an optional remote opening feature, to lower the top from outside. The Mustang doesn’t offer a remote top, so the driver will have to run to the car, get in, turn the ignition on and raise the top to prevent the interior from being damaged.

The 4 Series Convertible has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent fuel theft and vandalism, such as sugar in the tank. The Mustang doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the 4 Series Convertible has standard cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Mustang doesn’t offer cornering lights. The 4 Series Convertible also offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

The 4 Series Convertible’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford only offers heated mirrors on the Mustang Premium.

When the 4 Series Convertible is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Mustang’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The 4 Series Convertible’s standard rear and side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Mustang has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The 4 Series Convertible has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning costs extra on the Mustang.

For greater rear passenger comfort, the 4 Series Convertible has standard rear a/c vents to keep rear occupants more comfortable. The Mustang doesn’t offer rear vents.

Model Availability

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The BMW 4 Series comes in coupe, convertible and four door hatchback bodystyles; the Ford Mustang isn’t available as a four door.

© 1999 - 2023 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.