It’s summer again and amidst the hordes of caravans that begin to clog our motorways yet again, flurries of convertibles are beginning to blossom. The British have very much grown accustom to the taste of alfresco motoring over the past years, and as a result we see a dramatic boom in their sales at this point in the calendar without fail. However this being Brittan there is also a major drawback to having the top down on your shiny new sports job, and that’s the fact that it rains whenever and wherever no matter the time of day or season. Being caught short in your new car isn’t particularly healthy for the interior, so what’s the solution?
Enter the BMW Z4 Sdrive 35i. Not the most delectable name I know but it is German so cut it a bit of slack. This is the latest Z4 from Bavaria, and I must be honest, I didn’t hold out too much hope for it. You see the cars predecessor, though well-built and functional, was unsuitably boring! The car at its most lively was when you went over a particularly bumpy road, where you could enjoy the cars rather firm suspension not doing an awful lot to save your spine. So as you can see I wasn’t going to hold my breath.
In complete contradiction to my predictions I am very pleased to tell you that this Z4 is an absolute joy. How did BMW solve theboredom I hear you ask? Simple, they put a nuclear weapon under the bonnet! The car is powered by a 3 litre, twin-turbo, fuel injected, 6 cylinder engine that produces 306BHP. Yeah, this definitely staves off the boredom as it will propel you and one other to 62MPH from standing in as little as 4.8 seconds, and keep going to its electronically limited top speed of 155MPH. Despite this the car still manages 26mpg, not bad for an engine that could be mistaken for a weapon of mass destruction.
The cars handling however, is its real party peace. When swooning around town or drifting down B-roads the suspension is supple and absolutely fantastic at softening the blows of rampant potholes. That said it also works in perfect synchronisation with the cars killer engine to produce a heart racing experience. Coupled with this cars 6 speed manual transmission the car works like a well-engineered watch providing functionality and style, not to mention the security to push this car to its limits. Its deep bellow and unquestioning loyalty though the corners makes for the perfect combination this summer. In terms of wind in your hair, the metal folding roof that tucks neatly into the boot can complete the Z4’s transformation in less than 20 seconds. This means whilst you’re in this country you can enjoy the sun when it’s there without the fear of the dreaded rain ruining the upholstery.
Upholstery… That’s another strong point of this car; in fact the interior in general makes this a very pleasant place to be. It feels very much a car of the 21st century with its smooth surfaces and deeply burrowed speedometer. Yes it has the usual BMW toys that to be perfectly honest make up the cars only real downfall. The gizmo’s themselves function adequately enough but with the roof down you would require the Hubble space telescope to decipher the symbols meaning on each button. So whilst being comfortable and benefiting from a more spacious cabin, the Z4 does have those little niggles that get on your nerves.
But let me ask you this, how many perfect cars can you think of? I mean really perfect, not a single fault. I can only manage 3 andnone of them are below £70,000 so with this only costing £44,220 its value for money is rather good. So there you go Great Brittan, the BMW Z4, your perfect companion this summer.