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The BMW Z4 Zagato Roadster!

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*This article is soon to be featured on Autoraiders.com

Read on for more on the BMW Z4 ZAGOTO ROADSTER BELOW:

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Initially BMW had a stint with Zagato one of the worlds finest craftsman of cars (Zagato is from Italy) and they produced for their first partnership together the BMW Zagato Coupe` for The Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este held at Lake Como in northern Italy; the car showcased there on May 25th 2012 and what a beauty the partnership produced! (See above photo featured in red)

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Three months later (August 2012) saw the alliance join together for the second time, between the two they showcased the BMW Z4 Zagato roadster! An even more beautiful showpiece and showstopper! The venue was Pebble Beach (California) and the Z4 Zagato Roadster was a commodity that everyone wanted to see!

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The prestigious Concours d’Elegance (California) 2012 was a perfect pit stop for this car to be showcased and you know it will only go on to attract more and more attention wherever it goes. This is the second collaboration between BMW and Zagato and I for one, hope it will not be the last. (See photo below featured in silver)

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Zagato is known for their handscraftsmanship and this fiery roadster was made within six weeks, from design to finished product, and it does not succumb to its predecessor in any ways. Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design said of the partnership “It was only with the expertise of both companies in the manufacture of high-end one-off cars and another display of outstanding teamwork that we were able to finish the car on schedule.”

Andrea Zagato says of the six week process “BMW is a high-achieving carmaker boasting a vast well of knowledge and technical capability in this area. When you combine that with our expertise in the creation of micro-series cars and our streamlined production processes, everything is in place to produce a beautiful model like the BMW Zagato Roadster in double-quick time”.

The Z4 Zagato Roadster and the BMW Zagato Coupe` will undoubtedly be collectors items as all Zagato models are, and of course the BMW Zagato Roadster has its distinctive trademark of a silver ‘Z’ on its sides near the front wheels. Alfa Romeo were the first to work with the Zagato coach builder and since then Zagato have made more than 200 Vmax concepts, special editions and micro-series, they focus on the shell of the body and incorporate their traditional measures of ensuring aero-dynamicty and lightweight construction as initial body designer Ugo Zagato learned his trade in aviation. The company has a family heritage passed on from Ugo Zagato to Andrea Zagato and Marella Rivolta-Zagato, who are now the third generation of Ugo’s family to continue with the Zagato studio and creations. Zagato was founded in 1919 by Ugo Zagato. (See Photo Below of Ugo Zagato)

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The Roadster is a convertible two door and a two seater car, obviously a car for the hot countries where there will be no rain to soak up only sun, although there is always the Z4 Zagato Coupe` which has a double bubble roof for those countries where there is torrential rain and the soft-top of the Zagato Roadster just won’t cut it although it too has a double bubble roof feature in a traditional Zagato hallmark, which will add to the value of the car in appearance and price. Unfortunately there is no price being given because this concept is not to go on sale, also BMW have not released any photos of the BMW with the roadster’s soft-top roof up, they have however raised the bar, standard, and the roof, metaphorically speaking, with this concept model.

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There are many features about the Zagato Roadster which are endearing to everyone and anyone, here are the most prominent of them:

  • The large yet elegantly stitched beige letter ‘Z’ on the headrests of driver and passenger, giving further association to its designer specification. Behind the headrests are beige shadow headrests which incorporate roll bars.
  • The BMW has its trademark kidney grille and it is an exquisite grille made up of small letter ‘z’s.
  • The front of the car has McLaren styled scoops although smaller in size, giving this Zagato roadster a racer look.
  • The lights are shaped finely and compactly and they are attractive to look at, directly above the headlights are razor-light LED’s.
  • The lights are twin and circular shaped.
  • The bonnet has been made with three-dimensions to it and has V lines from the BMW logo at the front creating the letter V, and gives the car further impressiveness about it.
  • Beautiful leather finish on the interior seats and roll-bars and side doors.
  • There is a small lip at the front of the car and this fits in with the look of the car and it adds to the cars racing appearance.
  • The alloy wheels are 19″inch in size and star-shaped with five spokes and include a matte finish to complement the rest of the paintwork on the body.
  • A meshed grille is present on the front of the car and are contained within the air scoops and above the lip at the front.
  • The seating is low and the driver sits down in a race like position inside the cockpit, making this car a real roadster.
  • There are futuristic concept styled indicators on the wheel archs, yellow at the front and red at the back.
  • The rear of the car has eloquent matte finished exhausts, one on either side, however BMW decided to be subtle in this aspect as they do not protrude from the car.
  • The lights on the rear of the car are one long strip with a black tint all across this strip and the lights cannot be seen, providing the roadster with a sense of mysteriousness about it.
  • There are also sporty looking scoops on either side of the car, behind the front wheel archs and on the bonnet on either side.
  • A curvaceous line is visible occurring from the rear of the door and reaching to the rear of the car.
  • The rear of the roadster features a diffuser ensuring smooth airflow.
  • Long wheel base.
  • The roadster is based on the  Z4 sDrive35is there are no specifications as to the engine under the bonnet or top speed, however estimates are that it has a 3.0-liter six speed engine. With this engine it would take a time of 4.7 seconds to go from 0-60mph and the top speed is said to be the same as the Z4 sdrive35is which has been electronically-limited at a maximum speed of 155 mph.

The rear is smartly created, it is smart, prim and proper with no sharpness about it and smooth curves around the edges, it is sculptured rather than chiseled. BMW had this to say about it: “Taken as a whole, the rear of the BMW Zagato Roadster has a very broad, low-slung appearance, giving the car a wide stance and planted muscularity on the road. Beneath it, the dark diffuser gives the BMW Zagato Roadster a squat, powerful stance. The body-colored surfaces between the tailpipes draw the final lines in the distinctive, low-to-the-road and broad-set looks of the rear end.”

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The interior is particularly worth mentioning in some detail, BMW says that the exterior and the interior both compliment each other well by blurring the two together: “The BMW Zagato Roadster consciously allows the boundaries between inside and outside to blur.” The interior is beige in colour and there is evidence of fine stitching everywhere, use of curvaceous brown lines on the inside of the doors and lights for both driver and passenger above the windscreen; attached to the windscreen is the rear-view mirror in a neat way.

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The left hand drive steering wheel and the seats make use of the colour beige and black and the armrest between the driver seat and passenger seat is beige and can be flipped up to conveniently store whatever is necessary; it leads forward to the idrive dial (controlling the on-board computer/display) and the gear shifter which has been richly doused in the beige colour too, providing this car with an expensive look to match its exterior outfit. The idrive display is hidden in the dashboard and rises from out of nowhere for the driver to view. 

The gear shifter allows you to drive the car in manual although the car is an automatic. There is also a switch which can be used to put the car into park, other switches that can be accessed with ease are the sport and comfort mode switches placed close to the gear shifter. There is a cd-slot to listen to music as you cruise along in this wonderful machine. The Zagato roadster has a start/stop engine button which is neatly placed to the right of the steering wheel on top of a metallic finished strip, alongside this button are four large dials which allow you to control different functions such as fan heating or cooling all laid on top of the same metallic strip. The Speedometers are large and shaped in a futuristic racing style, yet again an attractive feature of the car.

BMW says of the interior colours featured and the ‘Z’ for Zagato: “The interplay of colors and composition of details bathes the interior of the BMW Zagato Roadster in a sumptuous ambience, while the brown “z” embroidered into the seats is a further clue to its origins.”

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BMW also go on to mention the interior design and say “The interior itself boasts the clear structuring one would expect from BMW and invites the driver to give the machine around him a thorough workout. Details such as the sweeping horizontal lines along the inside of the doors and the full-length center console lend a rarefied sense of exclusivity to the sporty promptings and driver focus of the interior.”

BMW have mentioned that the Zagato Roadster is like its partner the Zagato Coupe` by being able to drive well at high speeds and also intended for these speeds.

The best quote from BMW on the Zagato Roadster is the following from the official press release: “The taut hallmark BMW surface treatment and Zagato’s clearly defined distribution of visual mass lend the BMW Zagato Roadster an athletic appearance – poised and eager, demanding to be driven.”

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Whether the Zagato Roadster will go into production remains to be seen although BMW have not ruled it out as yet! The same is to be said about its counterpart the Zagato Coupe`. Everyone will be wondering if their is soon to be another collaboration and many including myself will be keeping are eyes open for the next showstopper from these two companies.

The Zagato Roadster and the Zagato Coupe` may be celebrated pieces, yet they are still a matter of argument, as to whether they are different pieces when compared or whether the Roadster is the Coupe` with the roof off, some argue that they have different features and that what makes them different, others say there features are similar and they look alike. I personally would add to the debate by saying that the Zagato Coupe` is not as attractive as the Zagato Roadster and the roadster is exactly what it should be, which is a fine specimen of a roadster!

The Zagato Roadster was launched in California and it seems only right to provide some additional information about BMW’s presence in America:

BMW own the Rolls-Royce brand as well as the MINI brand and the figures for the car dealers in the USA are as follows:

“The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 338 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 139 BMW motorcycle retailers, 114 MINI passenger car dealers, and 32 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers.”

BMW of North America, LLC has been around in the United States since 1975 and Rolls-Royce Motor Cars began distributing vehicles in 2003.

“The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and the Rolls-Royce brand of Motor Cars.”

In South Carolina, is part of BMW Group’s global manufacturing plant, for all X5 and X3 Sports Activity Vehicles and X6 Sports Activity Coupes. BMW in 2010 announced that it would spend $750 million to expand operations at the Spartanburg plant. This investment will produce around 240,000 vehicles a year, making Spartanburg the largest car plant in the United States through its number of employees. All signs that BMW are doing well and BMW will be wanting to continue to develop their standing further in the USA.

I’ll conclude by saying that this BMW Zagato Roadster is an exclusive concept model and if it does not go into production, it will, many would hope, have some influence on the design of future production models.

See Below for a Video of The designers of the BMW Zagato Roadster – Karim Habib, head of exterior design at BMW and Norihiko Harada, Chief Designer Zagato, where they touch upon the relationship with Zagato, the six week deadline, the launch for Pebble Beach and the design of the Zagato roadster.

   

Feel free to leave comments!

Raj Mehta

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BMW: First the expression of Joy – ART Campaign (Z4), and then: a BMW ART GALLERY@LONDON NCP CAR PARK!

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The Z4 has been campaigned by BMW as a car which is an:

Expression of Joy!

The people at BMW went all out in showing the world exactly how expressive the Z4 is, and by word, it is so exasperatingly, eccentrically, expressive that it produced an artwork which is not only a masterpiece, but also of epic proportion! The New Z4 is BMW’s latest showroom piece and is undoubtedly the undisputed champion – especially the Z4 GT3!

Which one is of preference to most is up to the public at large, the Z4 is already proving popular and is gaining further in the ranks of the classic cars of the future! The Z4 and the GT3 version are a duo of incomparable vision compared to their competition!

The vehicles competing with the Z4 are: The Infinity G37, The Audi A5, The Mercedes SLK, and The Porsche Boxster, The Audi TT, and The Nissan 370Z! As you can see there are many competitors to the Z4!

The BMW Z4 has been around since 2002:

(BMW Z4 2.5 (2002-2006), BMW Z4 2.2i (2004-2005), BMW Z4 M Coupe (2006-2009), BMW Z4 M Roadster (2006-2009), BMW Z4 2.5i Sport (2006-2009), BMW Z4 Coupé (2006-2009), BMW Z4 sDrive 23i (2009 onwards) BMW Z4 sDrive30i (2009 onwards), BMW Z4 sDrive35i (2009 onwards),

And continuously seen of the competition throughout the years! The Z4 brand is still going strong with the latest model on the market being the BMW Z4 sDrive28i (2012 onwards)!  Re-shaped, Re-styled, and Ready for everything! The Z4 starts from £29,485 and if you want the M version, the price starts at £32,650, all models are only available in petrol, and the CO2 emissions (g/km) is 159. The Z4 is said to be in a class of its own and all that is required!

However the Z4 M version is the icing on the cake and will look slightly better with the sports customizations!

The Z4 and the GT3 Z4 are double trouble! Both are fun and funky! Some of the features of the BMW Z4 are the mean looking contours for the roadster which emerge from the BMW emblem, which makes this roadster look smoking and full of swag! The Z4 is made easily recognisable by these contours and there’s no mistaking the GT3 Z4 as that has a huge winged spoiler at the rear of the car. Double trouble indeed! The combo models will make you say WOW!

As for the interesting parts here are some of the most important :

BMW uses keyless technology to start the engine at the push of a button (the start/stop button), and the remote key sends a signal to the car to unlock it or lock it, at which point the door handles illuminate to provide further assisted entry to the car!

Electric Power Steering, BMW TwinPower Turbo Technology, Auto-Start/Stop, Optimum Shift Indicator, Brake energy Regeneration, Tyres with reduced rolling resistance, and Lightweight construction. (All of which are part of BMW’s Efficient Dynamics Green Initiative!)

The Z4 is available in Manual (6-speed transmission) or Automatic which has an 8 speed transmission making the Z4 a real roadster!

There’s also a turbo-charger which eases the roadster to a speed of 156mph (the roadster has been limited to this speed).

The Z4 comes complete with a retractable hard top roof which can be retracted at speeds of up to 25mph, as for more on the BMW hardtop, here’s a quote from BMW:

“long bonnet, short overhangs and deep, way-back seat – in a modern idiom create a look that is as familiar as it is unique. A look that is complemented to perfection by the retractable hardtop. Whether open or closed, this folding roof maintains the low-slung lines typical of a roadster. With it you can savour one of the finest ways to drive in comfort.”

The Z4 is a rear-wheel drive (17″, 18″, 19″ alloys), has ABS as standard, a CD player and Radio, cruise control as standard, air conditioning as standard, good safety with airbags  for the driver, passenger, and front side airbag, electric windows, and is a two-seater roadster with four cylinders which performs well and reconvenes a time of 5.6 seconds to 60mph! Additional safety features include rollover bars fixed behind the headrests and stable “A” pillars along with the feature of the bonnet automatically rising in a collision. The head and upper body airbags protect the head, ribcage and pelvis areas acting as cushions in a collision.

A little car the Z4 may be but the German roadster’s 2012 update is getting bigger in name, even the lights (xenon and round) on the car are smaller than the grilles and this gives the Z4 a wicked look and only adds to the cars flair! The car has daytime running lights. The front of the Z4 looks hungry for the road and there are further additions beside the grilles which are air intakes on either side and lowest to the ground beneath the kidney grilles is a fierce looking meshed carbon front splitter!

Quick enough for BMW who used to produce engines with their trademark 6 cylinders; yet in their efforts to be greener have chosen to use a four-cylinder blueprint for the Z4 which performs well although there is less power being produced whereas torque is increased. The car is available in Single or Twin exhaust tailpipes! And has cruise control, and a high-beam assistant.

The Z4 is a rear wheel drive and can be operated manually (via gear paddles) or automatically. BMW have made this roadster with the vision of it being an everyday car for use 365 days of the year! They say that the temperature within the car will be suitable for whatever weather conditions the car is in, and there are options of four round air conditioning controls or automatic air conditioning. There is also the iDrive onboard control system which controls the different functions such as accessing, Telephone, Sat-Nav, Settings, Drive-mode and Radio/CD.

Engine & Power:

Standard Engine 2L 240hp I4      
Horsepower 240 @ 5000 RPM      
Torque 260 @ 1250 RPM      
Valves 4      
Displacement (cc) 1997      
Bore X Stroke (in.) 3.3 X 3.5      
Compression Ratio 10.0:1

Exterior Dimensions & Weight BMW Z4 sDrive28i

         
Curb Weight – Automatic (lb.) 3262.8      
Wheelbase (in.) 98.3      
Length (in.) 167      
Width (in.) 70.5      
Height (in.) 50.8      
Track Front (in.) 59.5      
Track Rear (in.) 61.4

SOURCE:  http://www.automobile.com

MORE ABOUT THE GT3 Z4! – (shown above)

BMW has released new details about the Z4 GT3: “BMW Motorsport has further developed the BMW Z4 GT3 specifically for the 2012 season. The engine now turns up to 9,000 rpm and has a new exhaust system. The rear wing is now made from carbon fibre instead of aluminium and produces greater downforce – with less drag.”

It is a star on the race track and has many accolades to its name: the BMW GT3 Z4! The car shines spectacularly in every way and looks like it could easily produce flames firing out of the GT3’s exhausts! A personal favourite of mine! Its place is however, I would say on the race track!

It has been taken up by private racing teams! The GT3 Z4 has done well in competitive racing and has made an impression! The racing car proving it had the mettle to produce a 1st place finish at the Dubai 24 Hour endurance event, and also securing second place from a low 49th position at the 24 Hour Spa Francorchamps event!

As you can imagine it is a much grander scale than the standard Z4! Whereas the Z4 says Zoom! The GT3 Z4 says ZOOM ZOOM ZOOM!!!!!!!!!!  It’s further enhanced in engineering, styling, and capability! It has a six-speed sequential transmission with a “Quick Shift” function, and an engine management system and the engine consists of a 4.0-liter V8! Being a race car there is also a racing anti-lock braking system present, a roll cage, and rims with central locking and safety clips.

Here’s the best bit!

It is available as a road car!

So prepare for take off!

It has been priced at €340,000.

Technical specifications BMW Z4 GT3  
Length: 4,387 mm
Width: 2,012 mm
Height: 1,210 mm
Wheel base: 2,509 mm
Weight: 1,190 kg
Tank capacity: 115 litres
Engine type: Eight-cylinder, V-configuration
Capacity: 4,361 ccm
Bore x stroke: 92 x 82 mm
Compression: 13.0 :1
Max. output: 515 bhp (8,200 rpm)

http://www.bmw-motorsport.com/en/cars/bmw-z4-gt3.html

CHECK OUT THIS VIDEO OF BMW Z4 vs BMW Z4 GT3

For those of you, whom have not had the opportunity to be acquainted with the Z4 and its mastery of art, please read on as I elaborate further.

“The BMW Z4 is a modern interpretation of a classic roadster and the most admired characteristics of a sports coupe`” In celebration of the BMW Z4 being an ‘expression of joy!’  BMW hooked up with the artist Robin Rhode who is a South African artist based in Berlin and gave him the privilege of creating an art piece to be the front of the BMW Z4’s campaign! This art-piece you see above is the creation of his vision which was then painted by the Z4 roadster! With the use of many colours and tyres! (Each colour was painted by a different set of tyres). Mr Rhodes did not drive the car, however operated it via remote control! Making this art-piece, even further wonderful! For those of you wanting to find out more there is a video of the artwork taking place and it is directed by Jake Scott.

The link is: http://www.expressionofjoy.com/#

“THE CAR IS A LITERAL PAINTBRUSH!”

The link shows you the different processes from the artwork taking place on a piece of paper by Mr Rhodes to the Z4 being a tool of art on a huge canvas! It also shows the preparation that went into the larger than life artwork! BMW have really gone all out with this campaign they even have an Iphone Game for this art based campaign! Not enough can be said of this art-piece, it is a fusion of car and colours! (I’ve got my own take on it which is why this article is no ordinary article it too is a fusion! A fusion of writing, colour and of course the Z4 and Z4 GT3!

There is more though!!!

‘Read on’

To find out more about BMW’s and their relationships with other artists!

This SECTION is on The BMW ART GALLERY THAT WAS IN LONDON!

BMW’s as you’ve never seen them before! And they have arrived in an array of flair and style, which none of them are lacking in! The Art Gallery lasted only two weeks and began in July and finished in August, it certainly made the rounds with Art Critics and Enthusiasts of Art and Cars! The Gallery was put on by the ICA (Institute of Contemporary Arts) at the NCP Car Park in East End of London and the admission was free. Do not despair if you did not go to see it, as you can see the photos of the Art Cars within this post!

This Art Gallery was a first for the UK! And the Art collection had begun over 35 years ago and using the cars as their canvasses leading international artists have been making their mark on what are classic art-pieces of the highest standards! Artists include Andy Warhol!

The London Olympics 2012, ICA and BMW all collaborated to put this exhibition on as part of the London 2012 Festival! And it was called the Art Drive! Artists included: artists: Alexander Calder, Sandro Chia, Ken Done, Ernst Fuchs, David Hockney, Jenny Holzer, Matazo Kayama, Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein, Esher Mahlangu, Cesar Manrique, M.J Nelson, A.R Penck, Robert Rauschenberg, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol as mentioned before.

So here are the cars and the Artists’ work! Videos included! Enjoy!

Raj Mehta Signing out!

1. First up there’s Jenny Holzer with the BMW V12 LMR! (1999)

2. Alexander Calder 3.0 CSL

A 1975 BMW 3.0CSL by Alexander Calder was the start of the BMW art car project and this was the first commissioned Art Car by BMW! Mr Calder was convinced by his French racing driver friend to take this project up, and it was used in the Le Mans Race in 1975.

3. Matazo Kayama 535i (1990) is a Japanese artist who studied at the Painting Academy in Kyoto this is his airbrushed Art Car!

4. César Manrique from Spain his Art Car features the BMW 730i (1990)

5. Frank Stella BMW 3.0 CSL, American abstract painter and printmaker this Art Car was done in 1976.

6. Andy Warhol BMW M1 Art Car. Mr Warhol is known for being a key and influential figure in the American Pop Art movement. This was the fourth Art Car commissioned by BMW. (1979)

7. Roy Lichtenstein BMW 320 CSi (1977) New York born artist. Again has a Pop Art theme to it.

8. American artist Robert Rauschenberg, Art Car BMW 635 CSi, (1986), he is said to have bridged the gap between Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art.

9. Australian Artist, Michael Jagamarra Nelson, Art Car:  BMW M3, was very keen on promoting and keeping aboriginal art around, the Art Car was produced in the time of (1989).

10. Esther Mahlangu BMW Art Car 525i (1991), she is from a tribe in South Africa, and has kept alive the centuries old traditional wall paintings of her tribe and her artwork reflects this.

11. Ken Done, Australian Artist, Aboriginal/Australian themes, Art Car is a BMW M3 group A, (1989)

12. Sandro Chia, BMW Art Car M3 GT2 Series Race Car (1992) – Italian/Painter Sculptor.

13. English Painter, David Hockney, BMW Art Car painted on BMW 850 CSi (1995)

14. German Painter, A.R. Penck, BMW Art Car Z1, (1991).

15. Ernst Fuchs BMW Art Car 635 CSi, Austrian visionary painter, draftsman, printmaker, sculptor, architect, stage designer, composer, poet, and singer. (1982)

16. This is my favourite! The Artist is American Jeff Koons, the BMW Art Car is a M3 GT2! (2010)

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