I’ve never driven the Toyota Supra on track, so I don’t know if it has an issue with bump steer or not. However, according to Nurburgring maestro Misha Charoudin, and his fans, it bump steers quite a bit. So he decided to test out the BMW Z4, the Supra’s mechanical twin, to see if it did the same. Where did he test it? Where else… the Nurburgring.
What is bump steer? Essentially, bump steer is when the front wheels can turn after experiencing a bump or dip in the road. That can happen to suspension geometry and alignment issues, as well as other various factors. Regardless of why, it’s not great and can be dangerous on track, at high speeds. According to Charoudin, the Supra’s tendency to bump steer is a problem. It’s not something I’ve heard of before but I’ll take his word for it.
But what about the BMW Z4? The Z4 shares basically the same running gear as the Supra. While Toyota and BMW tune their cars differently, the subframes, suspension geometry, and shocks are all mostly the same. Plus, they have identical chassis. So you’d imagine that any issues the Supra suffers, the Z4 would suffer as well.
However, that doesn’t seem to be the case here. The BMW Z4 M40i in this video is bone-stock, without any suspension, wheel, or tire upgrades. And yet it doesn’t really bump steer, like the Supra does. In fact, Charoudin seems impressed with how it drives, especially considering it has no mods.
That last bit is no surprise to me. I’ve been a longtime BMW Z4 defender, calling it one of BMW’s best driving cars since I first drove it. And it’s not just in M40i-spec, either. Even the BMW Z4 sDrive30i is a great little sports car. Is it Porsche Boxster good? No probably not. Is it even Toyota GR86 good? That’s a tough one but I’d say it’s close. Still, it offers quite a bit of rear-drive fun, a surprising amount of precision, good steering, and funky looks, all wrapped up in a convertible package. And, according to this video, is even set up a bit better for track day-duty than the Toyota Supra.
So take that, Z4-haters, it’s actually a good little track day toy, despite being a small convertible. Give it some suspension mods, better tires, and an exhaust and you’ve got yourself one helluva drop-top weapon.