Rumors of a smaller roadster known as the BMW Z2, which aims to capture the spirit of the departed BMW Z3 , have been swirling for several years, but nothing ever happened. Well, Autocar has resurrected the rumors and we now have a little bit of unconfirmed information on this potential model. It looks like it is the real deal, but you’ll have to be the judge.
While the Z4 is slowly transitioning into a GT car, the rumored Z2 will be an open-top, entry-level roadster that gives the opportunity for roadster fans to buy one without shelling a small fortune, an aspect that made the Mazda MX-5 Miata legendary.
While BMW is bound to call this car a "Z3 successor," the omission of RWD alone isn’t deserving of that description. Let’s see what BMW has in store for us in this exciting project they may undertake.
Updated 5/12/2014: Car and Driver has brought to our attention that despite a lack of information, the FWD BMW Z2 is very much still alive and projected to hit the market in late 2016. Prices will range from around $30,000 for the base model to as high as $50k for the M variant.
Click past the jump to read more on the Z2 Roadster.
Exterior and Interior
Expected to sit on the ULK platform underpinning nearly 23 Bimmers and Minis, the design is rumored to be inspired by the Concept Active Tourer with a chopped top and a sleeker lines. An idea of how small the BMW Z2 is rumored to be is well depicted in an image of a Mini Cooper Roadster, sans the retro design.
Under the hood, BMW plans to offer the same engine lineup that powers the Mini Cooper Roadster, including the 1.6-liter turbo engine that produces 184 horsepower. Unfortunately, the Z2 will carry BMW ’s new front-wheel-drive system as standard, so some roadster enthusiasts may be disappointed. On the plus side, there will be a top-of-the-range 2.0-liter 4-pot turbo engine that pumps nearly 300-horsepower.
Rumors say that the future Z2 will target models like the Mazda MX-5 Miata, but we certainly do not see the possibility of the Mazda overtaking this roadster. The Mazda MX-5 Miata is a heavier model with a lot less power under its bloated hood. However, the machine set to power the Z2 is still not 100-percent known so we can’t be sure exactly which vehicle will be set to take on the Z2.
When Can I Get One?
Rumors originally said that we would see the Z2 in the 2013 model year, but that obviously didn’t happen. With the base engine an d chassis already produced, we can safely say that seeing the Z2 in the 2014 or 2015 model year is reasonable. The 300-horsepower, 2.0-liter engine may come later.
Expect the price to be around the $25,000, which is quite competitive in Bimmer terms.