BMW Z4 Coupe Concept
A genuine pacemaker for the sports car aficionado in every respect: At the 61st International Motor Show in Frankfurt BMW is proudly presenting the Concept Version of a closed sports car which gives dreams a name: the BMW Z4 Coupé.
Glistening silken-matt like a powerful sculpture made of solid aluminium, the Z4 Coupé fascinates the beholder, emanating a flair of true power and agility. Indeed, this car, one of the most exciting world debuts at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show, clearly bears out the motto this year’s event, the largest of its kind in the world: the Thrill of Motoring.
The Z4 Coupé Concept Car makes the heart of the sports car enthusiast quite literally skip a beat, right from the start whetting your appetite to go out there on the road: extremely driver-oriented in every respect and designed without the slightest compromise for agility and dynamic performance, the Z4 Coupé appeals to all your emotions. This is the kind of car only BMW engineers and designers could create, a two-seater to which they have given all their passion. So creating this unique car, BMW is once again setting new trends in design, motoring concepts and technology – trends which later will be found again in series production.
The long and sleek engine compartment lid, the passenger cell moved far to the rear, as well as short overhangs front and rear, through their specific proportions, clearly visualise those outstanding attributes typical of BMW: A longitudinally mounted straight-six power unit developing its superior muscle beneath the bonnet and conveying its power for supreme driving dynamics to the rear axle. In conjunction with the long wheelbase and, as a result, the emphasis on the rear end of the car with its centre of gravity visibly moved to the rear, this muscular Coupé looks as if it is about to pounce and take off even when regarded at a standstill.
The Concept Car is powered by BMW’s 3.0-litre straight-six already lauded by a number of the most renowned international awards – an engine which has become a genuine icon marking BMW’s leadership in innovation in engine technology. In its latest generation with a composite magnesium/aluminium crankcase, VALVETRONIC valve control, and numerous other technical innovations, this six-cylinder is definitely one of the most advanced power units in the world in general and in its segment in particular. At the same time it marks the pinnacle in output and performance: Developing 65 kW or 88 hp per litre, BMW’s three-litre offers the highest level of specific output in its class. And as the world’s lightest six-cylinder with a power-to-weight ratio of 1.18 kW or 1.60 hp/kilogram, it also offers the highest standard of relative performance.
Maximum output is 195 kW/265 hp at 6,650 rpm, peak torque of 315 Nm or 232 lb-ft comes consistently between 2,500 and 4,000 rpm.
Boasting rear-wheel drive unparalleled in its qualities on a sports car and, as a result, smooth and precise steering unmarred by drive forces, perfectly balanced axle load distribution, short body overhangs, and a long wheelbase, the BMW Z4 Coupé has all the attributes required for sheer driving pleasure of the highest calibre.
Like all of BMW’s concept cars, the Z4 Coupé is a unique, one-off creation. But its outstanding performance and the fact that demand for high-profile premium sports cars is consistently increasing, provides a lot of food for thought and the input for a very tempting story: to give the successful BMW Z4 Roadster a fixed roof “brother” as a further member of the “Team”.
The BMW Z4 Coupé Concept Car is a one-off creation and is not intended for everyday use. But in a subsequent production series, this outstanding sports car might well become one of the fastest and most dynamic driving machines on the road, its final drive ratio again shorter than in the Z4 Roadster allowing even better acceleration.
Benefiting from BMW Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), enhanced Dynamic Stability Control (DSC), Electrical Power Steering (EPS) and a high-performance brake system, the driver is able at all times to use all the power and performance of his – or her – Z4 Coupé for optimum driving dynamics, enjoying equally outstanding safety in the process.
The foundation for this superiority is provided by body stiffness of the highest calibre compared with similar sports cars, not only ensuring supreme driving dynamics, but also contributing significantly to a standard of crash safety quite unusual for a sports car.
In a style typical of BMW, the Z4 Coupé Concept Car combines traditional and visionary design features characteristic of the BMW brand. Indeed, it is this synthesis of tradition and the future – one of the principles of BMW’s design philosophy, which makes the design of the car so authentic, trendsetting and characteristic of the brand.
The fascinating aesthetic looks of the Z4 Coupé take up the modern, expressive design language of the BMW Z4 Roadster with its dynamic interaction of convex and concave surfaces. Combined with the proportions of a classic Coupé, the sporting but elegant Concept Car is a truly outstanding, extravagant and – visually and technically – challenging sports car in every respect.
The Coupé is based on the body and overall layout of the BMW Z4 Roadster and is characterised by the Roadster’s purebred proportions and expressive design language. But at the same time BMW’s designers have done much more than just put a roof on the car: They have created a Coupé with perfect dimensions and all-round balance, a car which, with its typically flowing roofline, is sleek and dynamic in its looks while at the same time exuding the unique flair of sporting elegance.
Without interruption, the A-pillar extends through the roof in a soft curve all the way to the rear end, where it merges with the surrounding areas. In the middle of the roof the Coupé boasts the characteristic recess so typical of many classic sports cars, giving the car an extremely flat and low-slung appearance.
The frameless side windows also emphasising the overall look of this dynamic sports car are also typical of a Coupé. The seam coming from the rear lid extends discreetly along the rear windows and then merges into the car’s sill line, thus maintaining the sporting window graphics of the rear side windows with that typical Hofmeister “kick” even with the rear lid open. The luggage compartment, in turn, is large and spacious for a sports car, offering all the room, for example, for two large golf bags beneath the rear lid opening up wide to a high angle.
Glacier Silver paintwork developed exclusively for this Concept Car gives the Coupé the silken-matt gloss of a sculpture made of solid aluminium. Through its cool, metallic look, the paintwork adds a further touch of strength and timeless value to this unique sports car.
Nineteen-inch aluminium wheels in three-dimensional appearance and standing out from the car’s body paint in particular through their dark finish accentuate the overall impression of power and concentration. Clearly, these wheels are made exclusively for this Concept Car in elaborate casting technology.
The close link between the BMW Z4 Coupé and the Z4 Roadster is also reflected by the striking lines in the side walls with their interacting convex and concave surfaces. The muscular-looking shoulder line of the car, in turn, visibly connects the two wheel arches with one another. The door sill line, finally, rises up dynamically towards the rear axle of the car, optical extension of the A-pillar setting a visual counter-point particularly in conjunction with the side air scoop integrating the side direction indicator beneath the BMW logo also on the Coupé.
The rear end of the car bears powerful testimony to the unmistakably sporting character of the Z4 Coupé: The “greenhouse”, for example, sweeps down powerfully into the tail section, accentuating the rear wheel arches and creating a truly powerful and muscular look. The spoiler integrated in the rear lid, in turn, ensures optimum aerodynamics and streamlining with the third brake light integrated beneath the spoiler in the rear lid. A further effect is that the spoiler and brake light give further emphasis to the sheer width of the rear end.
This gives this outstanding sports car an even lower and wider appearance. And like on both the BMW 1 Series and the 6 Series, the large BMW logo in the rear lid also serves as the mechanism for opening the luggage compartment.
The rear lights were developed exclusively for this one-off Concept Car. With a little edge in between, the lights take up the profile of the seam around the rear lid, blending harmoniously into the tail section of the car with their particular interpretation of the letter “L” design so typical of the brand. The powerful-looking, beautifully finished exhaust tailpipes round off the rear view of the car by adding a further touch of uncompromising sportiness.
The exceptional body design of the BMW Z4 Concept Car is matched by the equally extravagant wheels: Measuring a mighty 19 inches, the tyres run on 8-inch-wide aluminium rims underlining the particularly sporting calibre of this unique Coupé. In their design – a modern interpretation of the classic spoke wheel – they have been developed exclusively for this Concept Car. And in production they benefit from elaborate casting technology, the three-dimensional structure of the wheels, together with the deep wheel hump, creating an impressive look further accentuated by the darker colour in comparison with the body of the car.
Dynamism for Your Senses: the Interior.
Giving great attention to detail, BMW’s colour and trim designers have created a truly unique interior tailored to the BMW Z4 Coupé in every respect. The most modern materials in first-class quality are blended with one another exclusively for this Concept Car, again adding another touch of uniqueness. As a result, the sophisticated and stylish interior points far into the future of interior design with all its ongoing potentials.
Contrasts instead of compromises ensure ongoing dynamism and tension also inside the Z4 Coupé Concept Car: The choice and combination of materials and colours blend the technical and sporting exterior of the Z4 Coupé with soft and harmonious elements inside the car, thus creating an ambience of genuine peacefulness and tranquillity. The matt and glossy finish form clear contrasts with one another in and through the many solid aluminium elements within the car, extending the high-tech character of the Z4 Coupé visibly into the interior. At the same time soft, top-quality leather in warm colours creates an atmosphere of cosiness inside this outstanding driving machine. Business-like high technology and the feeling of a warm cocoon – here this is not a contradiction in terms, but rather a world of harmony.
Black and coloured surfaces delineate the various function areas from one another. Through contrasts and brightness within the interior, the driver and passenger experience a feeling of openness and size – a feeling of space further reinforced by the colour scheme on the instrument panel as well as the trim surfaces. In its dark finish, the sill line harmonises smoothly with the natural, light interior leather, giving the car’s occupants a superior feeling of safety in their world of sheer driving pleasure.
By tradition, aluminium and leather are strong symbols of value, elegance and sporting performance in the world of motoring. Hardly any other combination of materials is this authentic in conveying the character and spirit of a pure sports car – hardly any other combination can match the flair of cool, metallic aluminium and warm, natural leather creating so much sensuality in a Coupé exuding so much passion. How many new surprises and how much diversity leather still offers today as a perfect product of nature is clearly demonstrated by the choice of materials and colours for the interior of this BMW Concept Car.
Nubuk – that Fine and Velvety “Feeling-Great” Leather.
The roof lining is finished completely in light-brown Nubuk leather. Carefully polished on the surface, this cowhide with its unique grain pampers your eyes and your hands through its velvety surface structure giving particular emphasis to the warmth of the colour chosen for the car and offering a particularly soft feeling.
High-quality, sophisticated glossy leather forms a beautiful contrast to the velvety Nubuk leather on the roof liner. Just how much attention to detail has gone into these materials, is borne out clearly by the decorative seams and the classic, timeless structure of woven leather, five-millimetre-wide strips of leather woven with one another in traditional canvas structure with supreme care and precision. Indeed, in creating and finishing the leather interior, BMW’s designers, through the beautiful seamwork and finish, once again confirm the high standard of art and enthusiasm they have given the BMW Z4 Coupé in every respect.
A further visual highlight within the BMW Z4 Coupé Concept Car is the aluminium pedals comprising black leather inserts as yet a further sign of artistic quality. This special burr leather is a particularly thick, robust and high-quality rendition of cowhide.
The floor is carpeted in a special functionally technical textile in a glossy matt look perfectly harmonising in its structure with the woven leather found elsewhere within the interior. Function elements made of burr leather are also integrated in this special textile – and since the strong, sturdy and highly resistant leather integrates the function required directly into the floor cover, there is no need for an additional protective mat on top.
Various combinations of high-quality materials are also to be found in the luggage compartment with the travel baggage directly integrated therein.
Apart from leather, the interior is also characterised by polished and brushed aluminium. Offering a beautiful contrast of matt and glossy surfaces, aluminium has both a technical touch and acts as a kind of sculpture, clearly embodying the solidity of the entire car. Three-dimensional rings around the circular instruments, the spokes on the steering wheel, the door openers and compartment openers, the rotary knob for the air conditioning, the pedals and the loading sill leading into the luggage compartment are all milled out of one single block of aluminium. Then, giving utmost attention to detail, BMW’s designers have gone even further, making each and every element an experience in looks and touch.
The three-dimensional rings around the circular instruments are just one example: High-gloss polished on the front surface, they are brushed around the outside. Visual and touch-related contrasts of warm and cold are also to be found in the door handles combining “cold” milled aluminium trim with a “warm” Nubuk leather body. The very sporting steering wheel with its cool aluminium spokes combined with the rim made of high-grip glossy leather, the aluminium pedals with burr leather inserts, as well as the trim surfaces on the dashboard combining brushed aluminium with leather inserts again take up this theme consistently throughout the car.
Not only the harmony of interior materials and colours will make the sports car enthusiast wax lyrical. Rather, the Z4 Coupé makes a clear pledge to sporting driving dynamics also in its design and the ergonomic features inside the car: The entire area around the driver’s cockpit is tailored to the individual at the wheel, offering authentic values in every respect. Everything the driver and front passenger touch feels strong, genuine and unmistakable.
It is an old BMW tradition for our designers to consistently convert superior function into an authentic look. Ultimately, this enables the customer to experience the substance of the car with all of his – or her – senses, in the process establishing a powerful emotional relationship to the product.
Every car a purchaser chooses is always a mixture of rational and emotional motives varying from one individual to another. A coupé, quite clearly, is more of an emotional product, the kind of car the customer chooses with his heart. But usually our common sense once again considers and analyses even this emotional feeling: Does this coupé really reflect my feeling of life, my personal style? Does it represent the values so important to me?
The more authentic a coupé appears to be when considered from this angle, the greater are its chances of being picked by the customer as an expression of his feeling in life.
The typical coupé driver knows that a coupé “only” covers a certain area of his life, a certain aspect of his mobility requirements. But precisely this area is particularly important to such a customer: This is where his dream car must offer everything he wishes to have without any compromises.
The customer is therefore willing to make a great commitment and show personal dedication in expressing and enjoying values such as freedom and independence. For it is precisely here that he lets so much energy come out. Energy which to many means driving in sporting style.
A Coupé like the BMW Concept Car presented at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show perfectly reflects all of these demands and expectations made by the discerning enthusiast. Tailored consistently to the sporting and ambitious driver, as well as to the spirit of active motoring, the Z4 Coupé gives the driver and passenger a direct feeling for the road and sheer driving pleasure of the highest calibre. At the same time highly developed drivetrain, suspension and safety technologies bear out the particular demands of the coupé customer also in technical terms. And as a sporting two-seater, the BMW Z4 Coupé Concept Car offers adequate space and all the comfort and convenience even the enthusiastic sports car driver does not wish to miss today.
Source: BMW press