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Thread: What if BMW delayed production of Z8 10 yrs

  1. #1
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    What if BMW delayed production of Z8 10 yrs

    My lovely wife asked me an interesting question this past weekend as we vacationed in historic Charleston, SC. Think what might have been had BMW waited a decade to produce the Z8....would it have even occurred? I'm guessing it would have the 509hp M5/M6 motor (0-60 in 4.0??)....probably the SMG as well. Fisker would have been a distance memory...so who the heck knows what the styling would be like....but based on current models...probably not that great. Powerful...but homely??? Neons???...probably not. Bigger wheels????....probably. Certainly a better radio/Nav.

  2. #2
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    What I was thinking about lately is that, there is no other (never been) a BMW roadster with the tone and character of the Z8. The 507 is an old ladies car in comparison, the Z3/Z4s are all 4s and 6s. The rare M1 had a 6. Only the old M5 had the same heart and growl... but that's a sedan. Even the newest M3 is just a 4 liter (never sound the same). So of all the cars they've ever made, there is not ONE that is really even close! And I don't see them producing another fire breathing V8 roadster any time soon. So... the Z8 is better than any sedan, any roadster, or any mid engined super-car they ever made. Have I missed something or is it the greatest BMW ever?

  3. #3
    No argument from me!! :-))
    Andrew Macpherson

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    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I could actually go for the 4.0 V8 in a sub 3,000lb car. That thing sounds like a demon. Too bad the M3 is so heavy.

    As far as the styling, I'm not convinced it couldn't be a very nice car done today. I actually give credit to the 507 as much as Fisker. Yes, I know he claims he only looked at it once, but the whole purpose of the design project was to resurrect the 507 in modern terms. As we know, the birth of the project in general was the given life after the board and execs drove several 507s at a planning meeting at the birth of what is arguably BMWs ugliest period of design ever. So, the beautiful Z8 was being created in parallel with the 7, 6, and Z4 (all pretty homely). I contend that it was the 507 influence that carried the design through BMW's drought of beauty. So, if the project were chartered in similar fashion for today, I believe it could be pretty good - perhaps not as good as 1999, but who knows. That being said, the general design of BMW (based on the CS) is moving in a much more attractive direction of late, and the ED concept has some interesting design cues that give hope for even further down the road.

    My guess is that today's economy would have killed the Z8.

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    thegunguy

  5. #5
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    + Cast strut towers! But what of all the "Improvements" in safety (even pedestrian)? Would the Z8 be possible? Would it weigh 4500 lbs? Would it be a 4.0, or turbo? Just couldn't be the same... time has moved on.

  6. #6
    Z8Mania
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    I dont think they would make the Z8 today. End of story. Great question but the people who would do such a car are long gone.

  7. #7
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    I do believe there is a similar project afoot in the deep recesses of M?nchen, but based on the Concept ED and safety + CAFE, it's definitely some sort of hybrid (see Porsche too). ZFs 8 makes it too easy to slap a motor inline.

    The idea of the M1 pops up every couple of years. So, where there's smoke...

    Even with NA and global markets being hurt the past few years, BMW has managed to continue climbing in sales and financial performance, even toppling the mighty Toyota. They have the means to do something great, but what...who knows.
    thegunguy

  8. #8
    I would guess if they do make another supercar it will be aimed squarely at the Audi R8/R10, which is essentially what the M1 Concept is. Personally I would have liked to have seen them do more or an AM DB / MB SL competitor, but they have never shown any real interest in that market segment, and the 6 certainly isn't in that league. If they do make another supersport car it will no doubt be lead by China, as those of us who went to the factory were made all too aware, that is now 'the market'.
    Andrew Macpherson

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  9. #9
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    No doubt - China is getting all the love going forward.

    I too would like to see an R8 competitor. BMW 'should' be able to trump Audi in such a competition, but I've been impressed with some of Audi's moves in the past decade. There little turbo 4s have been gems for quite a while.

    Now we have BMW moving to it's "efficient" electric power assist steering. It's pretty sad. Dana lent me a new 535GT the other day, and it had the steering feel of a Camry. I'll give you the brake regeneration, but the parasitic drag of the power steering pump vs. loss of feel with electric assist is not where the Ultimate Driving Machine needs to be going. More calibration? Perhaps, but it's horrible right now.
    thegunguy

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Norcal View Post
    What I was thinking about lately is that, there is no other (never been) a BMW roadster with the tone and character of the Z8. The 507 is an old ladies car in comparison, the Z3/Z4s are all 4s and 6s. The rare M1 had a 6. Only the old M5 had the same heart and growl... but that's a sedan. Even the newest M3 is just a 4 liter (never sound the same). So of all the cars they've ever made, there is not ONE that is really even close! And I don't see them producing another fire breathing V8 roadster any time soon. So... the Z8 is better than any sedan, any roadster, or any mid engined super-car they ever made. Have I missed something or is it the greatest BMW ever?
    While I'm not a fan of the old 8 series at all, you are forgetting the 850csi. Sure it was a heavy pig, but a 5.6 liter V12 with 376 hp and 409 ft/lb torque. That's BMW's highest rated torque gasoline engine ever.
    C.A. Cardenas (AKA Dan)
    2003 (last one?) Z8 - Hellrot / Sport Rot
    Original Owner - Munich Tourist Delivery
    -- Others --
    1988 M6 - 32K mi. - Original Owner
    1989 DINAN 750iL - 73K mi. - Original Owner
    1998 M3 - 63K mi. - Original Owner
    2015 X5 (F15) Diesel - Daily Driver

  11. #11
    Administrator thegunguy's Avatar
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    Too bad the M8 concept never made it out of development.
    thegunguy

  12. #12
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    You're right, I did forget about the old 8 series... my point exactly. Somehow the combination of weight, luxury and styling, and no drop top, and the fact that it was made as many lesser models, don't put it in the same league (IMHO)

  13. #13
    Z8Mania
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    I think you mean naturally aspirated. The new M turbo V8s are making way over 500 ft lbs as is the TT V8 in the B7.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Z8Mania View Post
    I think you mean naturally aspirated. The new M turbo V8s are making way over 500 ft lbs as is the TT V8 in the B7.
    Actually, I was thinking of the diesels. My X5d has 425 ft/lb., which is very tasty; however, you're right those new turbos are torque monsters. I should have said normally aspirated gasoline engines.
    C.A. Cardenas (AKA Dan)
    2003 (last one?) Z8 - Hellrot / Sport Rot
    Original Owner - Munich Tourist Delivery
    -- Others --
    1988 M6 - 32K mi. - Original Owner
    1989 DINAN 750iL - 73K mi. - Original Owner
    1998 M3 - 63K mi. - Original Owner
    2015 X5 (F15) Diesel - Daily Driver

  15. #15
    Z8Mania
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    The F10 M5 is going to be a monster!!

  16. #16
    Z8 Ate My Homework! Norcal's Avatar
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    But Turbos or diesels in bloated SEDANS and SUVs will never be the same as an NA 5.0 V8 aluminum roadster, period. In five years that old sedan or SUV will be just that, old and used up, yesterdays news... great daily transport but nothing to covet.