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(2000 - 2003)  Rating


Unfortunately the BMW Z8 roadster was built in only limited numbers

Engine Engine power Fuel consumption Fuel type 0-100 (0-60) Top speed
4.9 V8 32 valve 400 hp 14.5 l/100km Petrol 4.7 s 250 km/h

Body type Roadster
Number of doors 2
Number of seats 2
Engine position Front
Driven wheels Rear
Length 4 400 mm
Width 1 830 mm
Height 1 317 mm
Wheelbase 2 505 mm
Ground clearance ?
Weight (normal) 1 660 kg
Weight (max) 1 900 kg
Boot space (min) 203 l
Boot space (max) ?
Fuel capacity 73 l


   The BMW Z8 was produced since 2000. It is available as a roadster. It was a limited production model with only 5 703 cars built.

   It is powered by a 4.9-liter engine developing 400 horsepower. The same engine also powered the BMW M5. Twin exhausts only hint at the performance this car delivers. It hits 100 km/h (60 mph) mark after just 4.7 seconds. Engine is mated with a 6-speed manual gearbox.

   The BMW Z8 uses a slightly modified suspension of the M5. The car has a 50/50 weight distribution between axles. It is claimed that the BMW Z8 outperformed Ferrari 360 Modena in terms of handling. There are plenty of electronic driving aids, that interrupt the driver taking corner too quickly or pulling away too fast. There is some understeer going through the corners though. Unlike other sports cars the BMW Z8 has a comfortable ride. It's not as supple as on other BMW cars, but it's not harsh either.

   A muscular sonorous exhaust note bewitches not only occupants, but the people nearby as well. Unfortunately there is a tiresome wind noise inside the cabin at a speed of over 140 km/h no mater if the soft roof is up or down. When the roof is down even with an add-on wind reflector air turbulence is excessive.

   Price of the BMW Z8 will put many buyers off. Fuel bills and other running cost will also get deep into your pocket. However it's residual values are strong. Furthermore this supercar possesses all the necessary ingredients for a classic: rarity, outstanding design and superior performance. The BMW has pledged to supply parts for this car for at least 50 years, to keep it running well into the 21st century. On the other hand reliability is the last thing to bother about this car.

   Interior of the car has a number of design clues back from the 1950s. Panels are well put together, while only a highest-grade materials are used. Everything is nice to touch and to look at. There is also a vintage simplicity inside the Z8. A centrally-mounted instrument panel ensures that the road gets your full attention. Electric windows and mirrors are controlled by a single instrument. Unfortunately you do have to make a little effort to put down the electrically operated roof down.

   Driver's seat is supportive and comfortable. Steering wheel and the seat have plenty of adjustments, so everyone will get comfortable. The only disappointing thing is a plastic rear window, as even the Mazda MX-5 comes with a glass.

   Unlike other sports cars the Z8 can be easily used as an everyday car as occupants comfort is not sacrificed for performance. There is more than enough space for two, however  boot could be larger.

   The BMW Z8 has an extremely strong aluminum frame. Substantial hoops protect occupants' heads in the event of a rollover. The front windscreen is also strengthened. This car comes with a Dynamis Stability Control (DSC) system. It combines anti-lock brakes, traction control and cornering stabilization to keep you out of trouble.

   Production of the BMW Z8 ended in 2003.


   Advantages: The BMW Z8 has a stunning style and crushing performance.

   Disadvantages: High car price and limited availability. Left-hand-drive only.

   Verdict: Feels and drives unlike any other car.

   Also consider: Ferrari 360, Lamborghini Gallardo.


Video of the BMW Z8
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