Rumours of the Next Generation Z car have been viciously sloshing about the web for some time now – but finally, at the Concours d’Elegance, BMW have unveiled their BMW/Toyota Love Child.

 

It appears to attract as mixed opinions as ever. Many appreciate the poise of a modern BMW but the brand looses purists, due to the models seemingly intermingling into one. 3, 5 and 6 series are all accused of being bland, lacking imagination, one looking like the other; so it appears that BMW are attempting to make a statement. The design retains the classic roadster features that draw people to the e85 Z4; which let’s not forget also had a divisive appeal. But the whole thing has a refreshing wild side that seems to be missing in BMWs of new.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Gaping vents carved into the bodywork, Modern LED tail lights and all moulded into a sleek, topless body sets the tone for a performance vehicle that is rumoured to pack 360bhp. There is no indication, however, as to whether the metal folding roof from the e89 Z4 will be retained, or if it will be an old meets new medley of canvas. We certainly hope that the rag-top makes a return, really adding to that roadster heritage whilst saving on weight.

It will however be rear wheel drive; amidst rumours that it wouldn’t. Thank god.

The Z4 will share hybrid gizmology with the 2018 Toyota Supra which will come in coupe guise only which raises a question. Will the Z4 retain the roadster charm of the Z4M ? That is, a sweeping body, sitting basically over the rear axle, and frankly, hooligan-esque performance that we fell for.

BMW is keeping its cards tight to its chest for now, will we see the same sort of carbon weave-man-ship that we saw with the i8? The interior and heads up display appearing to cater for driver customisation are nice hints at the potential level of innovation that we might see.

The first thing that jumps out, amid the F-type like body, is that the seating arrangement looks suspiciously more centralised than the e85, suggesting it may be more likened to the e89 – a pseudo grand-touring drop top – which would make sense given the last iteration of the supra was far from a small car. It sort of cocoons the driver in a similar way that a mid-engine Supercar would, rather than plonking the driver right at the back, leaving them to hold on for their life.

We do have to keep in mind that at the end of the day, this IS a concept, so undoubtedly it will become mellowed, watered down and fettled. All we know is that we’re looking forwards to seeing how this one develops – and hope that the end product lives up to the hype set by the concept!

What are your thoughts?

 

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