The rumormill churns out that two new Z models will join the BMW lineup in the future. The BMW Z5 and Z7 are said to be on the drawing board at BMW design studio and could arrive by 2016-2017.
The two roadsters could be built upon the new flexible architecture that BMW and Toyota have partnered to deliver. The scalable hardware works for a wide range of vehicles, from an entry-level 200 hp sports car to a 650 hp Ferrari-beater at the high end.
In basic form, the rear-end and all-wheel drive platform can accommodate four, six and V8 engines, both for front and midsize placement. From a design stand point, it can also support a two-seater as well as a droptop or coupe.
Same sources say BMW aims to use the platform for at least four models: Z5, Z7, 6 Series Coupe and second-generation i8.
BMW Z5 would replace the Z4, the roadster we learned it won’t make it back to the BMW lineup. Back in 2013, BMW CEO Dr. Reithoffer said that the successor of the Z4 would be built on a new sports car platform. “If the Z4 has a successor, it could be part of a new sports car architecture from BMW,” said Reithofer in an interview that also touched on the BMW – Toyota sportscar. The Z5 would also be designed as a two-seater, powered by four and six-cylinder engines.
Performance is said to be between 211 and 367 horsepower. In addition, a hybrid eDrive will be offered as well. Unlike current plug-in hybrids, the electric motor in the BMW-Toyota sports car is tuned for performance. The continuous power is 136 hp while the short-term power mode has 204 hp available.
While this new model comes as no surprise, the BMW Z7 is a totally different story. First time it has been referenced in a rumor, the Z7, as expected, will sit above the Z5 and could produce 650 horsepower. It is considered a spiritual successor of the amazing BMW Z8.
The 6 Series Coupe will also go through a redesign and a change in market strategy. The super sporty coupe is rumored to become even more raw than the current generation and better positioned to take on the Porsche 911.
Last but not least, the second-generation BMW i8 which would come to market around 2021 but with no mid-engine.
Toyota will also use the same platform to spawn new models as well, from a Lexus LZ to a the super duper Lexus LFA second-generation.