Skip to content Skip to footer navigation

BMW Z4 M40i — The Zoom Zoom Petrolheads Love


Hand-crafted, luxury experiences curated by our team—speak to our concierge to learn more

By The Sybarite Team on 14th May 2024

The glorious sound of a combustion engine starting up and burbling away is now becoming rare. So, when I pressed the start button of the Gunmetal grey BMW Z4 M40i, I sat for some time before I decided to pull away from the car park, writes contributor Jeremy Webb.

To car enthusiasts, the notes of a car's exhaust can be meditative, and I was indeed captivated by the Z4.

My senses lit up when I engaged Sport mode by pressing the button in the centre console and turned out of a junction to join the main road. Adrenaline and dopamine flowed through me (much like the power does in the Z4 M40i) when I put my foot down on the accelerator pedal and the rear wheels spun upwards.

The Z4 has two engine choices, a 2-litre four-cylinder turbo or a 3-litre straight-six turbo, which I drove and is the M40i version. There is the 194bhp 20i M Sport and the 335bhp M40i. As before, both use an eight-speed torque converter auto gearbox. The BMW Z4 M40i's straight-six is a lovely engine with powerful torque available from low down, providing an impressive turn of pace. Electronically controlled dampers are standard across the Z4 range and work well, especially in Comfort Mode which provides a smooth ride.

The BMW Z4 has a premium quality interior, which may be the best in this class, with luxurious materials, excellent control placement, and attention to detail with panel fitment. The seats have sizable bolsters to hold you in place while you enjoy the Z4's dynamics, and you are as snug as a bug. You get plenty of room inside to stretch out and get comfortable for any journey. You aren't exposed to the elements because you are insulated with a superior convertible roof. It also keeps out the wind and road noise exceptionally well. The push of a button activates it and folds away or covers you in seconds.

You get a generous amount of internal storage with several bins for stowing this, and a central console holds a sizeable amount, as does the cubby to the left of the steering wheel. A shelf behind the seats and two big cupholders up front add to storage. The touchscreen is controlled using BMW's iDrive system rather than the latest 8.0 OS in cars like the iX. The trunk has ten cubic feet of space, and you can take luggage for two easily.

The BMW Z4 M40i is one of its class's most fuel-efficient sports cars and returns decent mpg. The fuel economy of the Z4 M40i, with its high horsepower, is 22 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway. On one of my journies testing fuel economy, the Z4 M40i exceeded its rating and delivered an impressive 37 mpg.

Modern cars are increasingly becoming sterile in driver interaction, with ever-improving and increasing safety systems added to even base models. Although these systems are superb at what they do, they somewhat place drivers in a bubble and deflect from authentic driver engagement. When you received feedback from a vehicle's steering wheel, suspension and engine, visually, aurally and physically, you had to concentrate, and when you drove hard, you had to work to do it. I wish there were some compromise where you have the driver experience of past sports cars and could limit safety system involvement. With this in mind, the BMW Z4 M40i has all the systems you would expect from a state-of-the-art vehicle, including lane-departure warning system, forward collision warning and daytime pedestrian detection with city braking. Options include active cruise control, active blind-spot detection, rear-collision protection, and rear cross-traffic alert. My caveat for all these systems is that your best safety feature when driving should be that you can concentrate without modern distractions.

The BMW Z4 M40i is a driver's delight with plenty of poke, good handling and the lovely sound of a combustion engine. It also looks glorious and is a head-turner, which makes it enjoyable to own. If you have the finances to look for a two-seater sports car, hopping in a BMW Z4 would be worthwhile, and you probably won't want to get out.


Price: £57,295

Online listing:

Warranty and Maintenance Coverage

  • BMW's warranty is average for the segment; however, its complimentary scheduled maintenance coverage is a standout.

  • The limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles

  • The powertrain warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles

  • Complimentary scheduled maintenance is covered for three years or 36,000 miles

Jeremy Webb has a website where you can read more of his reviews on cars, motorcycles, travel and more.

Share this Article

You Might Also Like