The Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is an event that’s usually associated with beautiful examples of classic and antique cars.
You don’t normally see a brand new car making its debut at the Concours unless it’s something really special. The world premiere of the BMW Concept Z4 was just that, something special.
Concept Z4 Is One of Two Concept Cars Shown by BMW
There were a number of BMW’s at the show this year. There were those from the 60s, 70s, and 80s. There were also two that were brand new. The first of these, the BMW Concept 8 Series car, was making its North American debut having been revealed at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este in May. Making its world premiere was the BMW Concept Z4. Both were revealed to the press at BMW’s annual Monterey Car Week Press Conference. Both of these will probably hit production next year for the 2019 model year.
Concept Z4 Represents BMW’s Modern Roadster Vision
Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design told reporters “The concept expresses the new BMW design language from all perspectives and in all details. From the dynamic-looking front to the striking flanks to the clean-cut tail end; a few lines and the subtle interplay between surfaces are enough to generate a sense of power and emotion.”
The Concept Z4 is all sporty roadster; evocative of the roadsters of old and newer ones like the Toyota Supra. This is because production of the Z4 will be a joint effort with Toyota and the platform will also be the basis for Toyota’s new sports car that is rumored to be the replacement for the Supra that everyone’s been waiting for.
The car has the company’s most aggressive and stylish shark nose since the original 6-series. The side intakes are reminiscent of those on the BMW 4 Series Convertible but slightly taller, more raked, and no chrome. Giving it the appearance of speed even sitting still, the headlights look like eyes that are pulled back by acceleration at the corners and the rear taillights are “swoopier” than those on the 2017 4 Series.
“The BMW Concept Z4 Series is an all-out driving machine.”
Performance Is Expected to Be Very Good
Both companies are being tight-lipped about performance numbers, but rumor has it that the Z4 will have a three-liter inline-six with as much as 360 horsepower ready to jump. One good thing for BMW fans is that it’s rumored that the Supra will only be available with an automatic transmission while the Z4 will have an optional manual transmission for driving purists.
BMW Has Storied Racing Background
BMW has been active in motorsports for several decades and has an excellent history in every series it in which it competes. For example, the 1999 season saw the BMW V12 LMR compete in seven races and win five times, including the Laguna Seca’s Monterey Sports Car Championship, 1999 24 Hours of LeMans, and the 12 Hour of Sebring.
Another good year for BMW was 1975, when their 1975 BMW 3.0 CSL IMSA Group 4 car won at the 12 Hours of Sebring. Their #25, the actual car that won at Sebring was displayed and raced over the long weekend. BMW also brought one of their 1972 ALPINA BMW 2002ti race cars with them. This was also a good year for BMW in IMSA competition where they won the TU class of the IMSA GT Championship.