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2023 BMW Z4 slightly updated, keeping roadster appeal alive

2023 BMW Z4 slightly updated, keeping roadster appeal alive
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  • The BMW Z4 gets a slightly more aggressive look in this third generation refresh.
  • Along with minor changes, an addition is that the sports bodywork, already standard on the M40i, is now added to the sDrive 30i.
  • The 2023 Z4 will launch in November and will cost $53,795 for the sDrive 30i and $66,295 for the M40i.

Props to BMW for sticking with its roadster: The segment has steadily shrunk, but some convertibles are still around. One of them is the BMW Z4, which entered the third model generation (fourth if you count the Z3) almost two years ago. Surprisingly, an update is already on the way, although this isn’t so much a mid-cycle update (at least we hope we’re not there yet) and more of a streamlining.

The Z4 is one of our favorites because it’s a serious sports car, and we suspect that’s due in no small part to Toyota’s contribution to this joint project that led to both the Z4 and Supra. We understand that while Toyota had their sights set on the Porsche Cayman, BMW was content with a roadster that would improve on the qualities of its predecessor. Significantly, the joint project only picked up speed after Herbert Diess had left BMW for the Wolfsburg pastures; He was interested in developing a hybrid with Toyota, but the Japanese insisted on a purist approach. What came out were two cars – the Z4 and the above– who are extremely competent in their own right, with clear differences.

Two engine options

In many other markets the Z4 is available as the sDrive 20i with a 194hp 2.0-litre four-cylinder and a six-speed manual gearbox, but the US portfolio starts with a more powerful version of the same four-cylinder. the 255 hp sDrive 30i. The range is crowned by a second model, the 382 hp straight-six M40i. Both engines are mated to ZF’s ubiquitous 8-hp automatic with torque converter.

In order to achieve a “new maximum of sportiness”, as the press release states, the previously optional M Sport body paneling, which has always been standard on the M40i, is now also standard on the sDrive 30i. The more chiseled and aggressive look will no doubt please the attention-grabbing crowd, although we’ve never had a problem with the cleaner look of the now-dropped Sport Line look, which the marque had identified as “classic BMW styling”. Experts will still be able to tell the two models apart: the M40i comes with mirror caps in bronze-colored Cerium Gray and larger, square tailpipes.

2023 bmw z4

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bmw z4 interior 2023

bmw

There’s a bit of nosework too: both variants get a redesigned front kidney grille that ditches the vertically positioned dots in favor of horizontally oriented decal designed to “amplify the impression of width at the front”. Three “rich” new metallic colors, a new optional 19-inch wheel design and optional black trim for the headlights round out the rather modest list of changes, which thankfully doesn’t include the curved dashboard currently trickling down from the iX electric SUV most other BMW models.

The new model year starts in November with prices starting at $53,795 for the sDrive 30i and $66,295 for the M40i, which is just a few hundred dollars above 2022 prices. We’re glad the Z4 is continuing, and we hope it continues to do so for many years to come. The slight improvements should give the market a boost until a few years from now we see major changes – which, if we were to grant a wish, would include a manual gearbox for the glorious straight-six like the Supra now offers.

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