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Having used a V4 for a month, a leveling probe is not really necessary. As long as you can level the bed properly, once you do it, you'll probably have to do it only if you move the printer or after some time. The dual Z-endstops that keep the X-axis aligned when homing are of great help.
The other reason why they did away with the sensor is the Ultrabase, which doesn't work well with inductive probes. I've tried a few, even one which is supposed to have 8mm sensing distance, but it fails to properly trigger. The probe could, technically, be added to the 32bit board and configured via GCODE, but I haven't tried it myself. And, again, there's the induction issue with glass and the aluminium bed.
As for the drivers and the option of either changing them or replacing the whole board, keep in mind that you would also have to replace the LCD because the V4 one does not have its own controller and the 8-bit boards can't run it. I've decided to keep my printer as-is under warranty. If or when the board dies, I'll either try to get a replacement in warranty. If it's out of warranty, I'll do the "downgrade".