The BMW Z4 was refreshed in September last year with visual upgrades and more standard equipment. Even after the facelift, there are no signs of BMW launching a fully-fledged M version, though – and knowing how uncertain the future of the Z4 is in general, we doubt the Bavarian company will change its mind anytime soon. But why is the company against a Z4 M performance roadster? The answer is very simple and you might actually know it already.
See, why the Z4 is a very nice sports car, it is a very niche machine. In the era of crossovers and SUVs, very few people are actually looking to buy a new roadster. Don’t be tricked by comments on social media and forums – yes, many people want to see a Z4 M on sale, but they are never actually going to buy one.
Gallery: 2023 BMW Z4
And this is the exact reason why BMW has no intentions to launch a performance version of the model – the market for it, even if it exists, is just way too small. Speaking to Car Buzz, Michael Wimbeck, head of the Z4 project, admitted the German automaker researched the market very well and was carefully and genuinely considering a Z4 M but eventually, the financial department didn’t give the green light. And, you know, when the people with the calculators and Excel files say no, that’s a no-no.
To a certain extent, BMW already has a Z4 M. Sure – it’s not a full-blown M division model, but the Z4 M40i already uses the same axle kinematics and subframe designs as the M3 and M4 duo, for example. It’s surely among the best-looking and best-driving modern BMWs and making it even better would have been a difficult task for the engineers. A costly task that could never pay off.
As sad as it is to learn there will be no Z4 M, BMW is still considering launching a three-pedal M40i version of the roadster. That would be a huge step in the right direction for BMW enthusiasts and frankly, it shouldn’t be that difficult to develop one since the automaker already helped Toyota with the engineering of the Toyota Supra with a manual gearbox. So, yes – a range-topping performance Z4 isn’t coming, but the next best thing could be actually in the works and coming sooner than you might think.