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Automobile Mag: “Can BMW Build A Real Sports Car?”

Rumors | June 13th, 2011 by 11
bmw-z4-silver-illustration

BMW sports cars…a topic that has been highly debated on BMWBLOG in the past five years. The topic become even more controversial back in 2008 …

BMW sports cars…a topic that has been highly debated on BMWBLOG in the past five years. The topic become even more controversial back in 2008 when BMW unveiled the later-canceled CS Concept, a new sports car with proportions that would have placed it against high-end offerings from Porsche, Aston Martin, Maserati and others.

Instead of a new Z8 or CS Concept, BMW delivered in the last years the Z4, a good-looking vehicle but with extra weight and a hard rooftop. But the rumormill continued to churn and the idea of a smaller, driver-focused Z2 Roadster came to focus in the last couple of years. The Z2 was said to use for the first time a BMW front-wheel-drive architecture and to compete with vehicles like the highly successful Mazda Miata. Of course, the FWD rumor stirred up even more controversy in the BMW enthusiasts community.

Recently, BMW insiders said that the company is now considering a rear-wheel-drive platform that will align the new Z2 with BMW’s core values.

Automobile Mag: Can BMW Build A Real Sports Car?

But, according to Automobile Magazine, a third viable option just came up among BMW officials: developing the car on the FWD platform, alongside the Mini Roadster and Coupe, but to take a page from Audi and make it four-wheel drive.

In a recent article, the US magazine outlines some of the pros and cons of the Z2 underpinning platform.

Initially, BMW planned to build the Z2 on the brand’s upcoming front-wheel-drive architecture. However, the mere rumor of a front-wheel-drive BMW sports car raised enough of an outcry within the enthusiast community that BMW officials are now considering two far better options. The first would be to continue developing the car on this platform, alongside the Mini Roadster and Coupe, but to take a page from Audi and make it four-wheel drive.Among the undisputed advantages of this strategy are (1) a short path to production (spring 2014 for a ragtop roadster, fall 2014 for a coupe version), (2) the traction bonus inherent to four-wheel drive, and (3) the economies of scale offered by hitching up to a high-volume architecture. On the debit side, it’s hard to ignore the usual weight, space, and cost penalties of adding driveshafts and other associated hardware.

Plan B scraps all that and pushes the launch back to 2015 or even 2016. That’s the bad news. The good news is that this route revolves around rear-wheel drive. The key is the next 1-series. Although the European-market hatchback 1-series will definitely move to front-wheel drive to compete better with the Volkswagen Golf and the like, BMW is now thinking that the coupe and the convertible should stay rear-wheel drive permanently and perhaps become the 2-series. (Indeed, the company just filed a trademark for the M2 name.) The Z2, of course, fits the new nomenclature to perfection and would share the 2-series platform. The Z2 would feature three different 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline engines rated from 170 to 270 hp.

Full article at Automobile Mag

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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_P52TUZIQZZYWCXJGG7GU6DAADE Hero Sina

    What the hell happened to BMW ? 
    The cars are no more aggressive, they aren’t beautiful neither. They became bigger and much heavier, the BMW’s famous handling is gone while everyone improved their cars handling, to cut the production cost they killed creativity in engineers, and changed policy to create more money.

    I used to be a BMW fanboy, in this 9 years i had 12 cars and 8 of them were BMW’s, but with this policy change in BMW’s headquarter i’m not sure I’ll be a BMW owner anymore.

    • Giom

      It’s funny you say you were a fan, when everything you’re saying is irrelevant, untrue or out of context. What you’re really saying, is that you wanted BMW to stagnate and follow the British motor industry – you know, down the toilet. You’re seeing a tiny tiny picture, while the real one is so much bigger!

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_3Y7W7MMMU3JKSDVK7YUV4ASSCI Alex

      Bye.

  • Giom

    Back on topic… yes, BMW can build a real sports car. Put a low slung two door body over an M5 chassis, and you really have something. The lower weight and better aerodinamics would be much better. So, I don’t doubt that they can… the question is why they don’t!

  • viper

    can bmw build a real sports car?
    No
    they cant.
    its 2011 , and by this time they should.
    look at the other german car makers……
    bmw is weak. and getting weaker by a year

  • alex

    M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1 M1

  • LexusLVR

    The 135i, 1M and M3 are the only really sporty sports cars BMW makes.

    The M5, M6, X5 M and X6 M are really just fat and heavy pigs that might handle well in their class but are nowhere near the ideal sports car.

    Actually, an ideal sports car would be something like a 1970s Alfa Romeo Spider or Fiat 124 Spider. Small, compact, lightweight and with an agile 4-cylinder under the hood and a manual transmission. 

    • LexusLVRSucksDick

       The ideal sports car is a Camry or a ES.  Them are rockets on the track.   Toyota Rulez

    • LexusLVRSucksDick

       The ideal sports car is a Camry or a ES.  Them are rockets on the track.   Toyota Rulez

  • Allman

    i don’t know , but when i am looking through yours negative standpoints on this issue, i am taken aback. what the hell is then M5, M3, X6M, X5M:::,,???? Which highly intelligent person according the  LEXUS LVR opinion, X6M is just fatty pig,,, hahaha i am laughing how ridiculous you are. Have you ever seen competition between porsche, audi, range rover, mercedes all were the same division as X6M… Look it up on the net,,, and i am not talking just about pace of BMW but also stability in curves ….. so to express myself clearly … BMW produces sophisticated engineered cars with remarkable design, specially sports cars. 

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