BMW Zagato Coupe concept unveiled

BMW and Zagato have teamed up to create a new concept for the forthcoming Concorso d'Eleganza in Villa d'Este on the shores of Lake Como - the BMW Zagato Coupe.

BMW and Zagato are keeping schtum about exactly what underpins the new concept, but if it's not based on a BMW Z4 we'll eat our virtual office hat. Especially since BMW and Zagato are saying that the concept is a fully road-legal runner.

"It is relatively easy to build a design study which is not intended for use on the road. Not having to meet any stipulations governing crash safety or pedestrian protection opens up a host of new avenues in terms of design," says Andrea Zagato, boss of the family firm. "The challenge lies in injecting the emotional appeal of a concept car into a road-legal machine. And we think we have succeeded in doing just that with the BMW Zagato Coupé."

The entirely handbuilt body's shape is a mix of distinct BMW design elements - twin circular headlamps, kidney grille - with classic Zagato touches such as the double-bubble (doppia gobba) roof (a design that apparently improves the car's aerodynamics and increases its structural rigidity as well as leaving more room inside for a helmet).

Oddly, both companies claim the surface treatment as their own. "This sculptural and visually striking surface treatment is a Zagato hallmark," says the press release before, in the very next sentence, claiming that "the surface treatment, on the other hand, is clearly inspired by BMW." Make up your minds, boys and girls...

Inside, Zagato has upgraded the driver-focused interior, adding horizontal lines in the instrument panel and doors to 'heighten the interior's sense of sporting elegance'. The base colours for the leather trim are a light and dark shade of grey, while red decorative stitching in the instrument panel, doors and seats brings the colour of the body into the interior. A 'Z' embroidered into the seats is the clearest reference in the interior to the origins of the BMW Zagato Coupé.

The "horizontal line" design theme has also found its way into the luggage compartment, as have the two shades of grey and the red accents. Here, the lines are a subtle reference to the form of the double-bubble roof. Two exclusive accessories - a hat bag and a travel bag - are also available. The travel bag also recreates the form of the double-bubble roof and is designed to maintain its bulbous lines even when empty.

There's no word as yet whether the BMW Zagato Coupe will make it to production, but it is at least more likely to go on sale than some of BMW's previous Villa d'Este concepts...

P.H. O'meter

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Comments (91) Join the discussion on the forum

  • M@1975 28 May 2012

    Nice, very nice, let's hope it gets made!

  • kambites 28 May 2012

    Nice proportions but horrific detailing. That seem to be a hallmark of recent BMWs, though.

  • g3org3y 28 May 2012

    Striking but not exactly elegant. Prob looks better in the metal.

    Not as good looking at this:

  • BorkFactor 28 May 2012

    Must just be me, but I really don't like any of the Zagato stuff. IMO the standard BMW Z4 looks a lot better than that.

  • Beefmeister 28 May 2012

    Love it. In isolation I think it's blummin' gorgeous, but...

    Am I the only one who is getting a bit bored with Zagato just doing the same thing every time? Double bubble roof, rear window to side window link, kamm tail. It's the same on all their recent cars bar the rear on the Aston Zagato. Look at the Perana Z-One (the new AC thing).

    They need some new ideas.

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