BMW has a long and illustrious history of building two-seat sports cars, and now, more than 80 years since the first BMW roadster went on sale, the BMW Z4 M40i First Edition has been unveiled, and we will see it here next spring.
Based on the Concept Z4, BMW claims the new edition of the roadster inspires not only with its agility, precision and dynamic handling characteristics that are typical of BMW M Performance models, but also with particularly sophisticated design and equipment features, including a body paintwork in ‘Frozen Orange’ metallic.
The revival of the Z4 sees BMW returning to the roadster market after abandoning the segment previously due to lower volumes and demands for manufacturing capacity for other mainstream models, as well the huge growth in SUVs and crossovers.
BMW stopped production of the Z4 in 2016. The first-generation model took over for the Z3 in 2003, with the second-generation Z4 selling since 2009.
Now BMW and some other carmakers realise they must have sexy, sporty and appealing models to manage the attraction to their brands and keep the age-profile of those motorists with disposable income as low as possible. This goes a long way to counteract the lower volumes aspect and profitability of such models.
However, to keep costs as manageable as possible, BMW's newest Z4 shares a platform with another newly revived model, the Toyota's Supra. This keeps engineering and development costs manageable. Toyota, too, needs to keep the brand appealing and a joint agreement signed in 2012 agreed that BMW would take the lead in the creation of the common platform. The shared new Z4 and new Supra platform are the result of this relationship.
The BMW Z4 M40i First Edition comes with a new straight six-cylinder 340hp engine with twin power turbo technology. New sports suspension with electronically controlled dampers, M Sport braking system, and an electronically controlled M Sport differential in the rear axle transmission are also featured.
The central sitting position for the driver, the low centre of gravity, perfectly balanced 50:50 axle load distribution, wide tracks and a compact wheelbase form the ideal prerequisites for a dynamic drive. The BMW M Performance car takes a mere 4.6 seconds to sprint from a standstill to 100km/h.
Vertically aligned headlights, the BMW kidney grille sporting a mesh design, the bonnet stretching sports car-like over the wheels, large air breathers on the front wheel arches, and the distinctive spoiler integrated into the rear lid, all contribute towards the characteristic look of the new Z4.
The design of the interior also places the focus on the sportiness of the new Z4. Forward-oriented lines underscore the driver-oriented cockpit styling. Likewise, the clearly structured arrangement of all control elements enhances the focus on the driving experience inside the new BMW Z4.
Moreover, for a perfect start into a new roadster era, the new BMW Z4 M40i First Edition offers specific design and equipment features that add exclusive accents to the car’s sporty flair. The expressive body paintwork in ‘Frozen Orange’ metallic is combined with an electrically operated textile soft top in anthracite with silver effect, the BMW individual high gloss shadow line, black exterior mirror caps, and 19-inch light alloy wheels boasting a bicolour, double spoke design.
The interior of the edition model comprises the Vernasca black leather trim with decorative stitching, electrically adjustable seats with memory function, the option ambient light and the Harman Kardon surround sound system.
Adaptive LED headlights with matrix function for the high beam, BMW head-up display featured for the first time in a roadster, and the BMW live cockpit professional offering the latest networking technology, underpin the advanced status the tradition-steeped concept of a two-seater, open-top sports car has reached with the new BMW Z4.
BMW says details of further engine variants, technical innovations and the diverse equipment features of the two-seater will be announced on September 19.