The premium roadster segment has been struggling for years and the BMW Z4 sales along with those from Mercedes-Benz SLK have been relatively low to the overall expectations. Despite a very-well received design and ride quality, the Z4 sales worldwide totaled 15,249 units in 2012.
In an interview with Auto Zeiting, BMW boss Norbert Reithofer makes an interesting reference to the Z4 and the possibility of having a successor. “”If the Z4 has a successor, it could be part of a new sports car architecture from BMW, ” said Reithofer in the same interview that also touches on the rumored BMW – Toyota sportscar.
Rendering by Autoevolution
Our own sources say that a BMW Z4 successor is highly unlikely and that a possible follower would the long-time rumored BMW Z2. The Z2 would follow the steps of the successful Z3, a small compact roadster. While our sources indicate a rear-wheel drive platform, the remarks from Reithofer could be interpreted that the front-wheel drive architecture could be used in place. But at these point the details are pure speculations.
The new platform could help reduce costs and implicitly a relatively lower price point for the premium roadster. One of the reasons why the Z4 sales have been hurting is related to the base MSRP that made the car less attractive.
Under the hood, the BMW Z2 would make extensive use of the four-cylinder engine family which can be tuned to performance levels similar to a six-cylinder.