BMW finally gives us an official teaser of the range topping M40i spec

Article by Christian A., on June 7, 2018

Two years ago, on around January 2016 was the first time we saw spy shots of the BMW Z4. And today, we still have not seen the actual vehicle in production version, but at least there are spy shots of the roadster depicting a camouflaged prototype. It definitely is no ordinary test vehicle as we are looking at the Z4 M40i, which will be the crown jewel of the range taking into account a full fat Z4 M will not see the light of production day.

As usual, the automaker isn’t giving us that much information about the car, but what we do know is that the range topper is going to be given a newly developed inline six engine that they promise to be extremely powerful.

Aside from power, the M40i will feature a great deal of other goodies, including an M sports brake system, new front axle, a lower sports suspension with electronically controlled dampers, as well as a set of M lightweight alloy wheels shod in mixed tires. BMW engineers have also come up with an electronically controlled lock in the rear axle differential to ensure the Z4 will be a proper sports car.

Adjacent images were actually from the Autodrome de Miramas in the south of France where BMW is currently testing their near-production prototypes of the new Z4 by making last minute tweaks to the powertrain and suspension.

On the other hand, when you look at our own spy shots, despite the fact that the prototype is dipped in camouflage, we can tell that it is still in the higher spec version judging by its intricate front bumper with plenty of vents. Other signs that this is the amped up version include the blue brake calipers and the large dual exhaust tips.

We can never really have a good look of the car’s interior if the only photos we have are spy shots. But luckily, we could still kind of see the cabin’s design from the photos we saw last April. Pictured above, the Z4 had the company’s new digital instrument cluster and most likely the latest iDrive infotainment system as part of the Operating System 7.0 previewed a couple of months ago.

With all the sneak peeks we have gotten, there really is one thing left for us to see, and that is the production ready BMW Z4. Speaking of this, we can’t help but mention that we also cannot wait to see the Toyota Supra. Meanwhile, the Bavarians are getting ready for an important debut in the weeks to come, with the 8 Series Coupe to be reborn on June 15 at Le Mans. What do you guys think of the new BMW Z4?

Press Release

The new BMW Z4: green light for pure driving pleasure.

Long bonnet, short overhangs, low centre of gravity, soft top: the sporty two-seater doing its laps at the BMW test centre in Miramas in the south of France is instantly recognisable as a purebred roadster. The new BMW Z4 is currently undergoing another particularly important stage of the process towards serial production maturity, in this case involving driving dynamics testing of a heavily disguised prototype. This will provide key insights into the performance properties of the new model, whose genuine roadster characteristics, pure driving pleasure and captivating sporty flair will soon go out on public roads.

Trials at the Autodrome de Miramas are focusing on fine-tuning of all drive and suspension systems – the basis for the sporty driving experience offered by the new BMW Z4. The most intense form of new dynamic roadster performance is embodied by the BMW Z4 M40i. A new, extremely powerful in-line 6-cylinder engine, a lowered sports suspension with electronically controlled dampers, a newly developed front axle, M light alloy wheels with mixed tyres, an M sports brake system and an electronically controlled lock in the rear axle differential create an overall package that sees the BMW M Performance model setting a whole new benchmark for driving pleasure in the roadster segment.

"The vehicle concept of the new BMW Z4 is geared consistently towards agility and driving dynamics," explains Jos van As, Head of Application Suspension. "The high level of body stiffness and the very rigid suspension attachment provide the perfect basis for a set-up that guarantees the performance qualities of a genuine sports car in terms of steering precision as well as longitudinal and transverse acceleration."

Like the Nürburgring-Nordschleife, the Miramas test centre offers perfect conditions for the new BMW Z4 to demonstrate its driving dynamics potential. Used by BMW to develop and test new models for more than 30 years, the centre comprises a long asphalt oval and a motorway ring road for high-speed tests as well as slalom, serpentine and circular tracks and a number of handling courses and circuits featuring highly diverse types of surface. These are currently being used for detailed analysis and optimisation of the roadster's acceleration, steering and brake response. For example, the final form of the adaptive M suspension as it interacts with the rear axle limited-slip differential is developed on a circuit that is also used for testing purposes by BMW Motorsport.

This intense testing process already indicates that the new version of the roadster concept will offer a tangible increase in sporty flair in the new BMW Z4. The new generation will particularly introduce effective enhancements in terms of agile handling, spontaneity and precision when changing direction and accelerating in dynamic style out of bends – without losing out in the comfort disciplines.

Source: BMW

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Topics: bmw, bmw z4, sports car

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