2022 BMW M4 Competition Convertible — They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and when it comes to automobiles, that statement holds particularly true. Over the history of time, we have seen many cars that are idolized by some and found deplorable by others. Of course, competitive rivalry may play a part in that as well, but even to the unbiased eye, some cars are just more aesthetically appealing to some than others. Some found the ’87 Grand National a gorgeous car, while others may have drooled over a ’99 3000GT VR4, or maybe a 2001 Integra Type-R, or a ZO6 or an R8 … the list goes on and on. But one car that has been almost universally enamored throughout its lifetime, and is the venerable BMW M3/M4. Of course, to every rule, there are exceptions.

New for 2022 is the very polarizing, and wordy, M4 Competition Convertible xDrive. While, the external looks of the M4 are up for debate, which we will address later, what we can dive into is the mechanical marvel that this Bimmer is. Under the hood, power comes from a mighty S58 engine which is an evolution of the S-engines we’ve seen over the years in a myriad of magnificence. The S58 is a 3.0-liter DOHC turbocharged inline-6 that produces a prodigious 503-horsepower at 6,250 rpm and monstrous 479 lb-ft of torque from 2,750-5500 rpm, redlining at a silly 7,200 rpm. That power is then routed through a quick-shifting ZF eight-speed automatic transmission and then on to all four wheels for maximum traction. But, keeping with purist BMW philosophy, the AWD system is rear-biased, and also capable of disconnecting from the front axle, which recalls M-cars of yore.

The 2022 BMW M4 Competition Convertible gets the typical M upgrades to make it into a true street fighter — interlinked strut towers, a strengthened front subframe, and model-specific front axle, steering, and braking systems. That braking system is predicated on massive 14.9-inch six-piston front and 14.5-inch single-piston rear brakes, while there is a ceramic option if you plan on doing some serious road-racing. In either case, those big brakes are wrapped by 275/35ZR-19 front and 285/30ZR-20 rear tires. Though convertibles aren’t typically racers, BMW does make the Competition’s top 40 percent lighter than the outgoing one, which does help lower the car’s overall center of gravity. The top itself can open or close in just 18 seconds and can be done at any speed up to 31 mph.

Despite being debatably portly, tipping the scales at 4,165 pounds, the M4 ‘vert hauls. The M4 runs from 0-60 mph in just 3.6 seconds and through the quarter-mile in a scalding 11.62 seconds on it’s way to an electronically limited 155 mph top speed, which can be raised to an even more death-defying 174 mph. No matter how you feel about its looks, the feeling you’ll get with the wind blowing in your hair at 150 mph will put a smile on your face nonetheless.

As for those looks, that brings us back to where we started. The rear of the M4 convertible is sleek and stylish with functional diffusers to keep the wind flowing in the right direction. There are strong profile lines and an aggressive stance. But, it is the front end the seems to be the crux of controversy when it comes to the M4.

While certainly functional, the uncomfortably massive double kidney grille is a serious point of contention amongst fans and foes of the Bavarian bomber. So with an MSRP of $86,300, that is a steep price to pay for something that you might not be completely in love with. But then, much like so many cars that have come before it, the 2022 BMW M4 Competition Convertible, and while it may not be universally loved by all, but if you see a thing of beauty, then no one else’s opinion matters anyway because beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the beholder of these keys, had best be holding on tight.