|Premium sporty/performance car; Built in USA|
|Good condition price range: $8,000 – $27,500*|
2003 BMW Z4
2004 BMW Z4
2005 BMW Z4
BMW Z4 interior
Ranking as a Recommended pick, any Z4 provides an excellent balance of performance, refinement, and driving excitement. Against prime competitors, the 2.5i cost as much when new as a Honda S2000, but is less powerful, while the 3.0i is by any measure a credible alternative to the comparably-priced Porsche Boxster.
BMW redesigned and renamed its premium two-seat sports car for 2003, making it slightly longer and wider, but with carried-over engines. Like the outgoing Z3, the Z4 was built in South Carolina. Unlike the Z3, it did not offer a coupe companion to the convertible body style.
Standard features included a manual soft top with heated glass rear window, run-flat tires, antilock four-wheel disc brakes, and an antiskid system. A power soft top was available. Rivals included the Audi TT, Honda S2000, Mazda Miata, and Porsche Boxster.
Two inline six-cylinder engines returned with unchanged power. The 2.5i used a 2.5-liter, while the 3.0i held a 3.0-liter engine. Higher performance M versions were not included. The Z4 2.5i came with a five-speed manual transmission, while the 3.0i used a six-speed manual. Both could have an optional five-speed automatic with a manual shift gate.
A six-speed Sequential Manual Gearbox (SMG) became available in midyear. Shifting via steering-wheel “paddles,” the computer-controlled SMG had no clutch pedal and could be set to shift like a conventional automatic.
Little was new for the 2004 model year. The 2.5i rolled on 16-inch wheels, while the 3.0i held 17-inch rubber. An optional Sport Package included a sport suspension, plus increased wheel size to 17 inches on the 2.5i, or 18 inches on the 3.0i. It also added a Dynamic Driving Control console button that quickened throttle action and reduced power-steering assist.
Leather upholstery was standard in the 3.0i and optional for the 2.5i. Xenon headlamps were optional on both models. A removable hardtop and a wind deflector were dealer-installed options.
Although the Sequential Manual Gearbox remained available on the 3.0i, it was dropped for the 2.5i. Options this year included heated seats, a navigation system, and BMW Assist emergency and concierge service. Chrysler’s Crossfire roadster was a new competitor.
More powerful engines, freshened styling, and midyear introduction of a hatchback coupe mark 2006 for BMW’s two-seaters. All Z4s have an inline 6-cyl engine. The 215-hp 3.0i replaces the 184-hp 2.5i as the base convertible. New for ’06 is the 255-hp 3.0si in convertible and coupe form.
Z4 carries over unchanged.
Z4 carries over unchanged.