New BMW Z4 engine lineup confirmed

BMW's new Z4 was finally revealed at last month's Pebble Beach Concours but it wasn't our first encounter with the car. From test mule spyshots through to our own time spent behind the wheel of the prototype, the Z4 has understandably garnered almost as much attention as its Supra sibling. Now, though, BMW has released full details for the two engine options which we knew about previously, as well information on a third, entry-level model.

Topping the range is the Z4 M40i with which we're all familiar. Powered by the twin-turbo 3.0-litre straight-six that's already available in the M140i and M240i, it produces the same 340hp between 5,000 and 6,500rpm and 369lb ft from 1,600 to 4,500rpm. That output is sent to the rear wheels via an eight-speed ZF auto and sees the 0-62 sprint taken care of in 4.6 seconds, as quick as Porsche's 718 Cayman S, with a top speed of 155mph.

Next comes the slickly named Z4 sDrive30i with a new turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder motor producing 258hp - 13hp more than the N20 unit it replaces - and 295lb ft. Peak output is delivered within the same rev ranges as the M40i, and via the same eight-speed ZF box for 0-62mph in 5.4 seconds.

Last and very much least is the Z4 sDrive20i. Using a detuned version of the engine found in the 30i it musters up just 197hp and 236lb ft, seeing it reach 62mph in 6.6 seconds. Like the 30i, though, it manages just 47.1mpg compared to the M40i's 48.7mpg, meaning that owners won't be trading power for efficiency. CO2 emissions of 139g/km do see the four-pot falling one tax band lower than the straight six, however, and its greater affordability is expected to see it comprise over 50 per cent of UK Z4 sales.

An electronically controlled, mechanical limited-slip diff will be standard on the M40i, optional on the 30i and unavailable on the 20i. Adaptive M suspension will also be standard on the range-topping model, as will M Sport brakes, and optional on both others. According to BMW all versions will benefit from the sharper handling and improved performance afforded by the new Z4's 50:50 weight distribution, stiffer chassis and shorter wheelbase.

There's no confirmation yet, but pricing is expected to start at around £35,000 for the 20i rising to just under £50,000 for the M40i. A full launch is set for next month's Paris Motor Show, though, and deliveries are expected to begin in March 2019, so it won't be long until we know exactly how the Z4 measures up.


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Comments (66) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Bradgate 18 Sep 2018

    The front end doesn’t look very BMW, does it?

  • Plate spinner 18 Sep 2018

    Bradgate said:
    The front end doesn’t look very BMW, does it?
    It looks like a weird origami pattern.

  • tubs 18 Sep 2018

    Was waiting to see what this actually looked like and a very disappointed with the design of this. Proportionally it just doesn't look right, its profile is to tall and short and the wheels look to small.

  • Master Bean 18 Sep 2018

    Single turbo twin scroll engine a la M240i. You managed to get it correct on the A35 article.

    PH, pedantry matters.

  • rmkisby 19 Sep 2018

    Plate spinner said:
    Bradgate said:
    The front end doesn’t look very BMW, does it?
    It looks like a weird origami pattern.
    Seems to busy to me - flashes of too many other cars. Bonnet makes me think Fiat 124 abarth and grille mesh is just random to me

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