The roadster was spotted in the company of its coupe sibling, the revived Toyota Supra.
Thank heavens for heated seats. That must’ve been on the test driver’s mind while taking the BMW Z5 for a spin in Sweden at temperatures well below freezing. Our spy photographers based in ABBA’s country had to endure -14 degrees Celsius (7 degrees Fahrenheit) temperatures while taking these shots of the Z4 replacement, which unsurprisingly was caught alongside the new Toyota Supra set to be sold exclusively as a coupe.
Eschewing the Z4’s hardtop in favor of a fabric roof, the Z5 still had provisional headlights and taillights while the production-ready body was masked by extra panels covered in the now familiar swirly camouflage. From some angles, like in the photo below, you can actually see the black rivets used to join the fake and real panels. That’s why it would be futile to talk about the car’s design since it’s still fully disguised. Same goes for the interior considering the dashboard was hiding underneath a black piece of cloth.
The Z4’s successor and the Supra reboot are expected to go on sale at some point in 2018, but an official reveal of at least one of the two is probably (and hopefully) scheduled for later this year. The two will reportedly use an assortment of BMW engines, plus an electrified powertrain reserved for the range-topping versions set to make use of Toyota’s hybrid knowhow and quite possibly employ an all-wheel-drive layout. Don’t hold your breath for a Z5 M as the Bavarians have already ruled out the idea of giving their forthcoming roadster the full-on M treatment.
Bear in mind the names of both cars haven’t actually been confirmed by any of the two automakers, so it’s all speculation at this point. It is the same story with the place of birth for the Z5 / Supra duo: Magna Steyr’s factory in Austria. Rumor has it as much as 60,000 cars are going to be made there on an annual basis, but it’s too early to know for sure.
Toyota will allegedly preview the car one last time in October at the Tokyo Motor Show with a near-production concept. We’ll just have to wait and if these reports will pan out.
In the meantime, expect additional spy shots to arrive in the months to come with more evolved prototypes, hopefully without those annoying extra panels.