Motoring

Buy this off-road BMW Z4 M before we do

An off-road sports car? The 911 can do it, so why not the BMW Z4?

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An off-road sports car? The 911 can do it, so why not the BMW Z4?

This awesome safari-spec BMW Z4 M has turned up on Bring a Trailer and while it would be a bit of a mission bringing it over here, it would probably be one of the coolest vehicles on any given off-road trail.

The owner has given the two-door sports car a healthy overhaul in the name of bouncing around rocks and mud, including a Ground Control suspension setup, 17-inch Black Rhino wheels with 235/65 all-terrain tyres, modified bumpers at both ends, Baja Design off-road lights, a 40-inch lightbar, roof-rack and a solid bash-plate nestled under the grille.

But the coolest new feature is easily the exposed rear hatch that houses two full-size spare wheels. A bit of a waste of a Z4 M? Possibly, but that doesn’t make it less awesome.

The exhaust looks standard, but those extra wheels sure aren’t.

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The exhaust looks standard, but those extra wheels sure aren’t.

Weirdly, the interior has been left as it came from the factory, including the leather sports seats, steering wheel, on-board computer, satellite navigation, cruise control and CD player.

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Same with the engine, which is a 3.2-litre inline six making 246kW/355Nm. That’s still a lot of power, but I did expect a bit of engine work to go along with the unique looks. It seems even the exhaust system is standard.

It’s kind of strange seeing a bog-standard interior with an exterior like that...

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It’s kind of strange seeing a bog-standard interior with an exterior like that…

The owner did replace the rod bearings and install an AFE air filter, however. The brake discs were also upgraded to newer cross-drilled rotors.

The E86 Z4 M Coupe was the replacement for the famous/infamous E36/8 “clown shoe” Z3 M Coupe and had an official 0–60 mph (97kmh) acceleration time of 5 seconds, and an electronically-limited top speed of 249kmh. It could lap the legendary Nürburgring Nordschleife in 8 minutes and 15 seconds.

The E86 was a far more popular car than its controversial predecessor, selling around four times as many as the E36/8’s dismal 1,112 sales (which makes it one of the lowest-selling production BMWs ever), but it was still far from a sales success.

Singer Vehicle Design

At the request of a long-term client, Singer has looked to a golden era of Porsche rallying in the 1980s to reimagine his air-cooled 911 as World Rally Championship-inspired, all-terrain competition machine.

The awful E89 Z4 replaced the E86 in 2009 without a full-blown M version in the line-up and there hasn’t been one since.

As for this car, at the time of writing, the car is sitting at US$15,000 (NZ$21,382) with no reserve, but there are still three days before the auction ends.

Even if it eventually goes for more, it still looks like a far cheaper way to get some sweet European sports car off-road action than some of the awesome off-road-inspired Porsche 911s that have been popping up recently.


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