Twenty years ago, if you had to show how successful you are, you would have a roadster in your garage and that’s how one’s success was measured during those days with the introduction of the BMW Z3. Times have changed now; people are now focused on SUV’s and can you believe that BMW now has about seven different options when it comes to SUV’s? It’s interesting how things change over time. When the people of BMW dropped off the convertible, I was not ready for how the car made me feel and then I realized that this car is far more about the driver, than it is about being seen.
Now, because I’ve done convertibles before, I understand that they are a happy pill, if you are feeling down all you need to do is to drop that top and your mood will definitely change. Also, remember that BMW has a rich history of roadsters that have stood out as icons of sheer driving pleasure. And now another is about to join the hall of fame in the shape of the new BMW Z4 – a premium open-top sports car boasting a classic fabric soft-top, an emotion-packed body design and a puristic, driver-focused interior. The two-seater has been systematically designed for maximum agility, thrilling dynamism, plus supremely precise steering characteristics with instantaneous response. I love the simplistic design that they have done with the interior, you have everything you need within grasp.
The two-seater has a low-slung, sporty, compact appearance whether the soft-top is up or down. With its new-look mesh-design BMW kidney grille and – for the first time – a vertical headlight arrangement, the car cuts an unmistakable figure from the front. The new BMW Z4 is equipped with LED headlights as standard, while the optional Adaptive LED headlights add a matrix function for the non-dazzling high beam and cornering lights. The elongated bonnet with arrow-shaped contour lines directed at the kidney grille straddles the wheel arches in the “clamshell” style, so characteristic of classic sports cars. With its driver-focused cockpit design, lines that surge forward with dynamic élan and trim finishers restricted to just a few areas, the cabin of the new BMW Z4 paints a picture of unadulterated driving pleasure.
What they don’t tell you is about the attention you will get when you drive the BMW in the hood, people resonate well with the brand even though roadsters are no longer as popular, they are definitely something to marvel at when you see one. Also there will always be that fascination with the opening and closing of the roof while driving, it never gets old. The engines available for the new Z4 benefit from a myriad of detail upgrades and promise a pulsating brand of power delivery. They send that power to the road through the latest-generation eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission. Hard at work in the BMW Z4 M40i is a 3.0-litre straight-six unit featuring M Performance TwinPower Turbo technology. The 250 kW engine generates peak torque of 500 Nm and propels the roadster from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds. The line-up of engines is completed by the 2.0-litre four-cylinder unit. In the new BMW Z4 sDrive20i, maximum output of 145 kW and peak torque of 320 Nm translate into a 0 to 100 km/h time of 6.6 seconds. The three power units come with a gasoline particulate filter to further reduce emissions, and all model variants comply with the Euro 6d-TEMP emissions standard.
Active Park Distance Control and the rear-view camera come to the driver’s aid when manoeuvring or parking. These two systems form part of the Parking Assistant, which takes care of steering, acceleration, braking and selecting gears both when parking the car and exiting parking spaces.
The display and operating system for the new BMW Z4 has also undergone further improvement. The roadster is available with BMW Operating System 7.0, which stands out with state-of-the-art digital functions geared precisely to the driver’s requirements. BMW Live Cockpit Professional brings consistently designed, context-based and customisable graphics to the fully digital instrument cluster and Control Display, each of which have a screen diagonal of 10.25 inches. To ensure perfectly intuitive and need-based operation, the driver has a choice of using the Control Display’s touchscreen functionality, the iDrive Controller, the buttons on the steering wheel or voice control.
This is definitely the kind of car that is for the man or woman who is on the move and wants to make a clear statement with regards to what they drive.
sDrive 2.0i 145 kW / 320 Nm R759 442M40i 250 kW and 500 Nm R1 036 698