Z4 Coupe concept car: concave
and convex design
13th September 2005.
If the Coupe version of BMW's
Z3 small sports car didn't stir so much emotion, or at
least, not as much as its roadster twin did, it looks
nearly certain today with the Z4
Coupe concept car which BMW
unveiled at the 61st IAA Frankfurt motor show (public
days: 15 to 25 September), that things got to change
drastically this time.
Contrary to the Z3 Coupe which has been
in production between 1998 and 2002, the Z4 Coupe doesn't
look this time as a mere addition to the original Z3
3rd brake light under the spoiler lip
emphasises the width of the rear end, just
in the right dimension to complement the
rear glass lower edge.
Coupe stands more clearly
as Coupe on its own, not just another version of the
Expected to hit the showrooms next
summer, the US-made (in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where the Z4 roadster and the
X5 crossover SUV are made) Z4 Coupe will target principally Porsche's new Cayman coupe which, in
turn, is none but the Boxter roadster's brother.
BMW describes its Z4 Coupé Concept Car
as an extremely driver-oriented sports car designed
without compromise for agility and dynamic performance.
As usual at the Bavarian luxury brand,
the long and sleek engine compartment lid pushes the
passenger cell to the rear, while the short front and rear
overhangs, through their proportions, express the typical
attributes of BMW design.
engine muscles its power under the long
wheelbase, to the rear axle.
Far from being a mere design exercise,
the long engine hood is there to cover the longitudinally
mounted 3.0-liter straight-six engine developing 265 hp/
6650 rpm (no less than 88 hp per liter), with 315 Nm of
peak torque available between 2500 and 4000 rpm. The same
engine is used too, with different settings, in the new
130i, the 330i, the 530i and the 630i Coupé.
In its latest generation, BMW’s
3.0-litre straight-six engine is equipped with a composite
magnesium/aluminium crankcase, VALVETRONIC valve control,
and other technical
innovations, making it the world’s lightest six-cylinder
with a power-to-weight ratio of 1.18 kW or 1.60
M3 engine version (inline-six, 3245cc, 343 hp) is expected to crown
the Z4 Coupe later with a power boost to 360 hp.
compartment with the rear lid, wide and
high opening angle.
Like most other BMWs,
the front engine muscle sends its power under the long
wheelbase, straight to the rear axle where the Z4 Coupé
is expected to have a final drive ratio shorter than in
the Z4 Roadster, allowing even better acceleration, all
with the "just in case" safety equipment such as
the Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), enhanced Dynamic
Stability Control (DSC), Electrical Power Steering (EPS)
and a high-performance brake system.
Design - The two-seater Z4
Coupé Concept Car combines
the dynamic concave and convex design language of the Z4
Roadster, with the proportions of a classic Coupé based
on the body and overall layout of the Roadster.
or as practical as a small coupe can be.
More than just putting a roof, BMW’s cardesigners
made a Coupé with beautiful dimensions and all-round
balance, the A-pillar extending through the roof in a soft
curve all the way to the rear end, where it merges with
the surrounding areas. The frameless side windows also
emphasise the overall dynamic looks.
The luggage compartment offers enough
room for two large golf bags beneath the rear lid which
opens 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,
while the nineteen-inch aluminium wheels, made in
elaborate casting technology, stand out in
three-dimensional appearance, through their dark finish,
with the tyres running on 8-inch-wide aluminium rims.
of matt / glossy, aluminium / leather, clear
/ dark colours.
The spoiler integrated in the rear lid
enhances stability by pushing the rear-driven wheels
downward, while the wide third brake light, just under the
spoiler lip, gives further emphasis to the width of the
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.
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
Interior - The matt and glossy
finish form clear contrasts with one another in and
through the many solid aluminium elements within the car,
with soft, high-quality leather in warm colours.
Black and coloured surfaces delineate
the various function areas from one another. In its dark
finish, the sill line harmonises smoothly with the
natural, light interior leather.
In the world of motoring, aluminium and
leather are strong symbols of value, elegance and sporting
performance. The roof lining is finished completely in
light-brown Nubuk leather polished on the surface,
contrasting with the glossy leather of the seats, door
trim and the steering wheel.
The aluminium pedals feature black
leather inserts as a further sign of quality. This special
burr leather is a particularly thick, robust and
high-quality rendition of cowhide.
aluminium wheels stand out in
The floor is carpeted in a special
technical textile. 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.
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.
High-gloss polished on the front
surface, the three-dimensional rings around the circular
instruments 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
steering wheel comes with cool aluminium spokes combined
with the rim made of high-grip glossy leather.