I believe you will find the below information quite useful. It comes from someone very close to BMW and a member of Germancarzone. To summarize some of the key points:
- apparently the new BMW Z4 E89 will launch in December
- BMW is also looking into the possibility of an M Z4
- Efficient Dynamics BMW Z2 Roadster, read hybrid
But here is the information, unedited:
With the new BMW Z4 Roadster (launching in December) forgoing a classic roadster soft top and instead using a folding hard top configuration.
Much of the discussion is focused on how much the weight of the car will increase with the now folding hardtop.
Although the use of lightweight materials on key areas of the car do not satisfy the curiosity of many.
Although brought in to prop up Z4 sales and originally a project put on hiatus when the E85 was in development. BMW brought forward the Z4 Coupe as a more performance focused model than the roadster.
Because of the introduction of the Coupe , Z4 sales increased and with the Z4 Coupe proved as a successful product for BMW, that BMW have green-lighted a Coupe version for production.
With the new Z4 Coupe BMW will focus more on the performance and the handling of the car and the new Z4 Coupe will seperate from it’s Roadster brother by being stiffer and lower with certain design features to differentiate the Coupe from the Roadster with a lower roof line and glasshouse, different shaped and larger air intakes , rear diffuser and ducktail spoiler , The overall look is more a traditional coupe with out looking like a two door hatch.
Like the current Z4 Coupe (or the previous) The car will only be offered with top end six cylinder highly efficient powerplants that ensure it’s looks live up to it’s potential.
With the new Z4 offering the new sDrive technology even a Roadster like the new E89 offers a new radical driving experience for a BMW Roadster and with engineers testing a fixed roof Z4 (Black tape and tubing made sure it looked like a hardtop) ensured that the fixed roof model with a much more stiffer structure benefited the Coupe prototype greatly.
There is still much to do for the Coupe to completely separate it from it’s Roadster brother to offer a separate identity and ensure the new Z4 Coupe stands out in terms of design , dynamics and performance.
A feasibility programme into the investigation of an M model for the Coupe only has also begun with the project now being treated with priority now the CS programme has been cancelled .
If approved and M model of the Z4 Coupe will possibly inherit the V8 from the M3 and usual M features such as Carbon Fibre roof.
With the economy in freefall and the lapse of vanity projects BMW are aiming the Z4 to be a return to back to basics small sporty cars instead of over costly vanity projects. With the new Z4 being based off the 3er platform the economies of scale are greatly in BMW’s favour to develop many key models off both the 1er and 3er Platform.
Also dubbed to appear is the introduction of the BMW Intro roadster badged as Z2.
With Z2 BMW are aiming at the compact Roadster class and possibly a Z2 Coupe could feature as well. BMW’s big push for a Compact Roadster is simple under Efficient Dynamics BMW aim for the Z2 Roadster to be the first hybrid BMW Roadster in production utilising BMW eDrive with BMW wanting to continue with what has started with the MINI-E and continue towards the BMW brand and eventually over to Rolls Royce.
With the MINI-E testing programme about to begin , MINI-E will be a good testing ground as BMW furthers and progresses the technology to suit upcoming ideas that is the informativeness of Project-i .
Project-i is not one solution but many all destined to feature on the BMW’s of tomorrow.