BMW to Reinterpret the Z3 as the FWD Z2

Since Autobild has a new rendering out on the forthcoming BMW Z2, figured it was as good a time as any to talk about the new baby roadster. Destined for 2014 production the Z2 will be based on the UKL platform that will underpin everything from the next generation MINIs to other fwd BMWs, the Z2 looks to slot in under the Z4 as a reinterpretation of the original Z3 – albeit with front wheel drive.

Clad with a simple and light folding soft-top and a range of three and four cylinder engines, the Z2 will slow in well below the current Z4 but slightly above the forthcoming 1 Series F2X based convertible.

Photo courtesy of a recent Autobild.

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  • Mike Olivera

    Too bad, I was so looking forward to a RWD Z2 as a Miata killer. Oh well.

  • Gjrpa1

    I despise the fact that BMW has admitted defeat and given up on bettering Porsche’s Boxster. The Z4 has already taken a much more luxurious and GT-like approach, and this FWD Z2 is going in a completely different direction as well. “Ultimate Driving Machine” can mean different thinks to different people, but in my eyes, the slogan fits the Boxster much more than either of the Z BMWs.

    • Anonymous

      Don’t be surprised to see or hear about ///M developing its own two seater to take on just the cars you mentioned. It would be M and only M, not based on a BMW production model.

      • BungusJones

        It would end up being the as-of-2011 AMG’ed “M”…. basically a turbo thrown on a standard issue BMW long block, maybe some fresh cam profiles and lookit-mee goodies to distract briefly from the FWD or the fact that it will most likely overheat and go into limp mode if it gets too close to a track.

  • Anonymous

    Shame, I was hoping for a RWD Coupe version.

    • Anonymous

      yes, perfect

  • bcworkz

    The Ultimate Hairdresser’s Machine. Sigh.

    (I actually hate the hairdresser stereotype, but it gets my point across better than anything else I could think of offhand. My apologies, no offense intended to hairdressers, only towards BMW.)

    • goat

      And Mazda will be releasing the 4th gen Miata, chassis code ND, which is to be significantly lighter than the current NC (itself not a heavy car) at ~2300lb, RWD of course, LSD available as always, lightweight folding hardtop available, the finest shifter in the business, and just enough power to exploit the chassis – with massive aftermarket support for more via SC and turbo kits as there are for every gen of Miata currently. I was hoping BMW would offer a proper low-cost lightweight alternative to the Miata in the euro vein we all know and love – but fwd?! I’ll just replace my sturdy-but-aging modded NB with a modded NC or a new ND by then… mazda’s win… Again.

      • R Burns

        Bmw can’t make a Mazda, a Caterham or a Lotus. They never did in the past and they never won’t But they sell much much more…

  • HERR26

    Actually there is still some debate to which model will be based on what.

    One strategy being looked at to further the City/Compact/UKL segments is a FWD Roadster which could reintroduce Z1 ,

    A Z2 would allow space for a car based on the 1er/3er matrix which would be RWD as per the original Z2 strategy.

    The Z4 could eventually become the Z6, based on either the 1er/3er matrix or the next phase of BMW’s modular matrix that will begin with the next upper models – 5,6,7 and the X5,X6 with a flagship Roadster (Z Spyder Stradale) as the flagship In which you can say Miss Blasi is the Roadster Design (queen).

    But there is also movement on the M specific Roadster and Coupe idea meaning no BMW Sibling and being exclusively M inspired by the idea set by the Porsche Boxster and Cayman.

    Everything though is like a jigsaw trying to be put together at the current time.

    • spiderz17

      M specific Coupe? Very interesting. I wonder how that will slot in compared to the M3 and next gen 1M (or M2)?

    • goat

      This is what most of us want – a rwd lightweight roadster smaller than the current z4. We realize it would cost a bit more than the Miata but it should be in the ballpark on cost… “affordable” in the sense that the e82 cars are affordable relative to the larger e92 coupes. The second-gen z4 was a good size and had great performance and a “raw” feel.. but it also cost near twice the cost of a Miata here in Canada so was by no means “affordable” new especially as a second “fun” car. But i remain ever-hopeful herr26… I would rather rip around in a euro roadster on the back roads on weekends than a Mazda but the execution and pricing needs to be right… And I worry that if the cheapest BMW roadster is to be a (lame) FWD one, itself likely selling for high $30k in Canada (already more than a Miata folding hardtop model) then BMW’s authentic RWD roadster will likely be sold for close to $50k (starting price). We’ll see I guess… Glad BMW is at least minding their sporting models. 🙂

      • JonPD

        Not doubt ///M could turn out a really great little car. Should be interesting to see if they can stack up against Porsche. If it turns out really great no doubt in ///M fashion it won’t come to the US lol

    • Anonymous

      A Z1, Z2, Z4/6, and an M specific roadster? Sounds like a lot of BMW roadster, like 4x what they’re doing now.

      I can’t see all that coming to market. Maybe a little less ambitious. How about a rwd Z2, and a Z4Mcoupe with the V8 in it to replace the M3 on the race track till the new 3 series is out.