Jaguar F-Type 2013 review
The brawny British sports car is back from the dead, thanks to Jaguar and its impressive new F-Type...
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BMW introduced the current generation Z4 quite a few years ago now and they have moved to keep the Z4 pot boiling with a Gen II version of the classically styled two seater.
Kick off point for the latest line-up is the Z4 sDrive20i at $79,900, with extra features adding up to as much as $9000 additional value compared with the previous Z4. The updated version now features an eight speed automatic transmission with paddle shift as standard in the two four cylinder variants along with launch control.
Also included this time around is BMW’s ConnectedDrive system that is filtering through the entire BMW line-up featuring an 8.8-inch hi-res screen. It networks features such as the internet, music interface with a smart phone, telephony, voice control and navigation among other things.
The optional packages, give a different take on Z4 ranging from classy to lairy and sporty. Possibly the most popular will be the M Sport with 18-inch light-alloy wheels and an aerodynamics package with large air intakes in the front and a rear bumper inlay painted Anthracite metallic. Something similarly sporty applies inside. The brutally quick Z4 sDrive35is has a version of the M Sport package as standard -- with 19-inch alloys.
Drivers will no doubt appreciate the standard-fitted Driving Experience Control to select a configuration to suit the situation at hand and satisfy personal preferences. COMFORT, SPORT and SPORT+ modes can all be called up using the rocker switch on the centre console. As well as adjusting the responses of the engine and DSC stability system, the different modes also alter the shift characteristics of the automatic gearbox, the responses of the Servotronic function and the mapping of the electronically controlled dampers, if these items are specified. These modes allow the driver to choose from a selection of distinctive and clearly differentiated set-ups for the car. Other items of equipment fitted as standard are xenon headlights, air conditioning, a heated glass rear window, the Soft Close Automatic function for the boot lid and run flat tyres with a run-flat indicator.
The new Z4 is slightly tweaked externally and cosmetically inside and is a hardtop-only these days, with a two piece lid that takes a scant 19 seconds to deploy at speeds up to about 40kmh. You’d be hard pressed to pick the exterior changes but Z4 has reshaped headlights with a reflective strip along the top edge, family bixenon headlights with white LED corona ring driving lights and an elongated kidney grille.A variety of paint finishes includes a stunning metallic orange called Valencia Orange and a number of interior packages are available to virtually customise the car's passenger compartment including Traction, Balance and M Sport.
The three model local range consists of the Z4 sDrive20i, Z4 sDrive28i and the Z4 sDrive35is, all petrol turbos with four cylinders for the first two and a 3.0-litre straight six twin turbo in the latter. The 20i is good for 135kW/270Nm, a 6.9 second 0-100kmh sprint and 6.8-litres/100km.
The 28i (same engine in different state of tune) is good for 180kW/350Nm, 5.5-seconds and 6.8-litres/100km. The fabulous 35is is good for 250kW/450Nm (500 on over boost), 4.8 seconds and 9.0-litres/100km. All pass EU6 emissions regulations and feature TwinPower technology _ direct injection, variable valve timing and lift and twin scroll turbocharging on the four bangers.
We drove all three variants in sunny Queensland and to be honest, would be entirely satisfied with the entry 20i model. It has superb dynamics and plenty of punch for those legendary mountain road drives on a crisp Sunday morning. No matter which dynamic system you single out, the Z4 will not be found lacking.
The 28 is a quicker and more engaging device because it has a lot more mumbo under the bonnet and is probably going to be the biggest seller. The 35i is a Boxster competitor with the required exhaust not and brutal acceleration but you have to concentrate harder as a result which can detract from the drive. The car looks sensational and we really liked the Traction package fitted to one drive car complete with orange leather inserts in the seats and dash.
In terms of performance, the Z4 was and always has been a crackin' good drive regardless of the engine or transmission. High levels of driver engagement and sharp responses have been a hallmark of the model since way back.
Who wouldn’t love a Z4 in the garage. It’s a real sports car with rear wheel drive, stupendous performance and dynamics, barking exhaust note plenty of kit and civilised nature.
|Z4 Sdrive 20I||2.0L, PULP, 8 SP AUTO||$25,200 – 33,440||2013 BMW Z Models 2013 Z4 Sdrive 20I Pricing and Specs|
|Z4 Sdrive 28I||2.0L, PULP, 8 SP AUTO||$29,500 – 38,610||2013 BMW Z Models 2013 Z4 Sdrive 28I Pricing and Specs|
|Z4 Sdrive 35IS||3.0L, PULP, 7 SP AUTO||$38,900 – 49,720||2013 BMW Z Models 2013 Z4 Sdrive 35IS Pricing and Specs|
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