Sam Philip15 December 2009

BMW Z4 gets hotter

Quicker version of BMW’s roadster arrives in the UK next year… but it’s not quite a Z4M

BMW Z4

BMW has announced that it will unleash its hottest new Z4 yet at the Detroit show in January.
 
It isn't an M, but it isn't far off. The snappily named Z4 sDrive35is (that 's' at the end is the important new bit) gets BMW's 3.0-litre twin-turbo straight-six engine boosted up to 340bhp - 34bhp more than the previous most powerful Z4.
 
Which means it is fast. The new Z4 will crack 62mph in 4.8 seconds - down 0.3 seconds and exactly the same as the Porsche Boxster Spyder - with top speed limited to 155mph.
 
There's extra torque, too - up from 332lb ft to 369lb ft on overboost. BMW's seven-speed double-clutch gearbox is fitted as standard, mated to a launch control system.
 
Need more kit? How about lower suspension, a new sports exhaust and an M-Sport bodykit?
 
All of which, inevitably, comes at a price: just shy of £44,000, which puts it right on level pegging with that Boxster Spyder - though you do, admittedly, get a whole lot more equipment as standard in your Z4. Like, er, doorhandles. And a roof.
 
With no news on a Z4M arriving any time soon, this is the hottest Z4 we'll see for a while. It goes on sale in the UK next March: anyone tempted?

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