When BMW launched the latest generation of Z4 roadster
in 2009, it tweaked the recipe of the car to allow it to compete more effectively against the Mercedes-Benz SLK
. While the original Z4 was a lightweight roadster, the newer generation has evolved into more of a grand-touring roadster, complete with the now-expected power-retractable folding hard top.
That’s not a criticism, merely an observance of the car’s evolution. Styling remains true to the Z4’s roots, with the elongated hood, wide stance and short overhangs still staples of the car’s design. Handling remains the car’s forte as well, with quick steering, a nicely balanced chassis and strong brakes rounding out the package.
The biggest change for 2012 comes in engines, and BMW has dropped its entry-level six-cylinder in favor of a turbocharged four for base level models. Gone is last year’s Z4 sDrive30i, replaced by the new Z4 sDrive28i
, but we doubt that buyers will be disappointed.