From the moment reports started to emerge about the Toyota Supra 3.0 getting a manual gearbox, BMW enthusiasts began to wonder whether that would happen with the six-cylinder Z4 as well. The Japanese sports car with a B58 engine and three pedals made its official debut at the end of April, but the peeps from Munich haven’t said a word about putting a clutch pedal in the M40i.
Six-Speed Manual for Z4 M40i
However, our sources originally told us in July it would happen, and we’ve now been told the world debut is right around the corner. The BMW Z4 M40i with a six-speed manual is going to break cover before the end of the month. While we don’t have an exact date, a quick look at the calendar tells us the premiere will occur in nine days at the latest, so the wait is nearly over.
Let’s keep in mind that BMW’s official website in The Netherlands listed the Z4 M40i at the end of last month with a six-speed manual, so the cat is pretty much out of the bag. What sort of transmission will it get? Well, the Supra – essentially a Z4 Coupe – uses a 6MT adapted from the Z4 sDrive20i. It’s codenamed “GS6L50TZ” in the Supra rather than “GS6L40LZ” in the BMW since Toyota made some changes specifically for its sports car by fitting a bigger clutch. In addition, the hardware had to be reinforced to cope with the B58’s extra punch.
Beyond the addition of a six-speed manual for the M Performance version – which is coming to the United States by the way – the Z4 is unlikely to go through major changes. It hasn’t been a strong seller and recent reports point to its demise in 2025, so BMW probably wants to give it only a few subtle updates before it pulls the plug. To that end, we’ve heard the roadster will retain the iDrive 7 and physical buttons while the styling revisions will be kept down to a minimum.
Following its debut before the end of September, the Z4 LCI will likely go on sale next year. While there’s no word about pricing just yet, we should point out that the 6MT is a no-cost option on the Supra.