The BMW is a very competent little sports coupe that only seats two, but offers some very nice open road power. The coupe is more for cruising and enjoying the ride and no so much for storage and features. BMW understands this and has built in only the bare necessities when it comes to interior features. The main engineering in this little pocket rocket is in the ride and the overall driving experience. There are few changes to the body since last year’s model, but the engine has received some revisions. Now with a 3.0 liter I-6 instead of a twin turbo, the driver will notice almost no difference in performance, but there is a noticeable increase in fuel economy due to the increased air intake flow.
This soft top roadster is a very small and very fast car. Because of the very light weight this vehicle gets away with a smaller engine that some of its competitors. The price of the vehicle is an issue for some, because this car can only carry 2 passengers the $60,000 + price tag may be a little rich for some peoples blood.
Engines: 3.0L I-6, 3.0L turbocharged I-6
Transmissions: 6-speed manual, 6-speed automatic, 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual
Models: sDrive30i, sDrive35i, sDrive35is
For the 2011 model year, BMW has added the Z4 sDrive35is to its lineup. The sDrive35is gets the same 3.0-liter turbo I-6 found in other BMW’s, but this one gets a power bump, taking the horsepower from 300 to 335 and the torque increases from 300 to 332. Plus, an electronically-controlled overboost function briefly increases torque under full load by another 37 pound-feet.
The BMW Z4 sDrive35is is available with a choice of six paintwork colors. In addition to Alpine White, Titanium Silver, Black Sapphire, Space Grey, and Deep Sea Blue, the Z4 Roadster is now available for the first time in Melbourne Red metallic.
M Sport upgrades also carry into the cockpit. A new thick-rimmed M leather steering wheel, an M driver’s footrest, and sport seats. Grey-faced instrument dials, Anthracite-colored roof lining, M door sill strips as well as M interior trim in Aluminum Carbon.
The BMW Z4 sDrive35is includes new M Sport upgrades such as adaptive M Suspension which combines a ride-height reduction of 10 millimeters (almost 0.4-inch) with electronically controlled shock absorbers (Dynamic Damping Control) thus providing a comfortable ride while increasing the vehicles agility.
The Z4 features four-wheel anti-lock brakes (ABS), side seat mounted airbags, driver and passenger side airbag head extension, driver and passenger knee airbag, airbag occupancy sensor, traction control, and a DSC stability control are all standard.
30i:18 mpg city/28 mpg highway
35i: 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway
35is: 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway
- Stunning looks
- Powerful powertrain
- Athletic chassis
- Minimal cargo space
- High price
Enjoyable drive, but not BMW’s best
- Nissan 370Z
- Audi TTS
- Porsche Boxster
- Mercedes-Benz SLK Class