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This Is Almost The New BMW Z4

“An all-out driving machine.” That’s how BMW’s SVP of Design, Adrian van Hooydonk, describes the new Z4 Concept. And judging by the evidence we have thus far, that seems to be a pretty accurate assessment.

At the Pebble Beach Concours today, BMW pulled the sheet of the much-hyped Z4 roadster concept, the successor to the current Z4 that BMW quietly killed last year. Van Hooydonk also expressed that the car would take a back-to-basics approach, which is doubtful, considering BMW would have computer-controlled seatbelt latches if they could.

The Z4 Concept features a brand-new headlight arrangement, with the lighting elements stacked atop one another instead of side by side to visually shorten the front overhang and differentiate it from the rest of BMW’s current, largely homogenous lineup. The familiar twin front intakes are larger than ever before, as befitting a concept car, but the kidney grilles aren’t as generously proportioned as they are on the new 8-Series Concept. Around back, it shares that car’s thin, floating taillight blades, and the entire rear end is impeccably judged. The fender intakes just behind the front wheels could have been ripped right off a C7 Corvette, and draw attention away from the incredibly high beltline.

Inside, it’s typical concept-car silliness, with a dished steering wheel that’s strangely reminiscent of a 60s Mustang. The driver’s side is a completely different color to the passenger’s side, which is a completely unique take on a two-tone interior that works surprisingly well. It also has a fully digital instrument cluster that could be plucked from the i8 on a production version.

Since the Z4 is twinned with the upcoming Toyota Supra, it’s rumored to share the Supra’s variety of 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder powertrains, the latter pumping as much as 360 horsepower to the wheels and having a 3.0L displacement. Bizarrely, it’s also expected to be available with a manual transmission, but its sister Supra is not.

The whole production car is expected to bow sometime in 2018 along with the Supra, but so far details about both cars have been leaking like nobody’s business. It’s likely we’ll learn even more about the production version sometimes soon, so stay tuned!

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