BMW has released the first official images of new Z4 in concept form. While some of details will be toned down for production model, it is thought that the car in these images will be very similar to model we’ll see on the road by the end of 2018. It will share many parts with upcoming Toyota Supra.
The new Z4 will be lower, wider and more menacing than outgoing Z4. There are deep body creases, a long bonnet and deep aggressive bumpers. Some of more extreme styling details on this concept will be toned down for final production model, the wing mirrors will be larger and buttresses behind headrests will probably be swapped out for a more conventional cover for the folding fabric roof. Signature BMW kidney grilles are large, but may have less chrome and could be smaller to fit a registration plate beneath.
While brakelights could be redesigned to be more conventional, production model’s rear end should resemble the concept. The upward-angled styling line that runs over door helps break up the body’s side profile and flows into rear styling, which enhances the car’s visual width. It is thought the BMW will only be sold as a convertible, the Toyota Supra will be built on the same platform but will be coupe only so might suit hardtop fans better.
The Z4 concept’s cabin looks well-built and fairly close to production. A large, central infotainment screen is controlled by a wheel on centre console, but will also feature gesture or voice control, while separate heater controls suggest that the screen won’t control those. A digital screen will sit in front of driver in place of analogue instruments showing the driving and infotainment information, while a head-up display helps keep your eyes on road for longer. It is unlikely that thin-rimmed steering wheel and bright red ‘race’ button will make it to production and red gearshift paddles will probably be black or silver. It is not clear yet whether the two tone dashboard will feature on the finished car, but it is unlikely the seats will be finished in contrasting colours as they are on the concept. The seats themselves look both plush and sporty, hinting that car has been designed with long-distance cruising ability in mind as well as racy handling.
Engines and driving
With a timer on steering wheel, different driving modes and an uncluttered cockpit, new Z4 wears its sporty credentials on its sleeve. Most Z4s will be rear wheel drive for agile handling but all wheel drive versions could follow later in car’s life to offer better all weather grip. We expect that both 8 speed automatic and a 6 speed manual gearboxes will be offered. The engines are likely to be lifted from BMW’s current range, that could mean a 2,0 litre, 4 cylinder petrol, a 3,0 litre straight 6 and possibly a diesel option, although recent stigma around diesels means a petrol-hybrid option is more likely. The company could launch a high performance Z4 M model later on, possibly borrowing engines from M2 or M3.
Price and release date
New Z4 will go on sale in November 2018, enough time to find some money down the back of sofa. It will be more upmarket than old car, so expect even the cheapest versions to cost around £40,000. 6 cylinder models and a few options could see the price nudge closer to £60,000.