The new BMW Z4 has only just gone on sale but its makers have reportedly already decided not to replace it at the end of its life.
The Z4 is on a list of ‘less expensive’ models that, in a report on automobilemag.com, don’t make the company enough money to justify spending the effort making them after the current models expire.
BMW’s profits have slipped markedly since 2015. Its share price has dropped from around €120 in 2015 to €68 this week, in the wake of dieselgate and a potentially vast anti-trust fine set to be announced by the EU. The ongoing trade war between the US and China, two of BMW’s biggest markets, hasn’t helped either.
Automobile reports that for CFO Nicolas Peter to make €13bn in savings between now and 2022, BMW’s overall number of engine and equipment variations must be halved. On top of that, models like the 2-series convertible, 7-series, Z4 and the two-door 8-series will be allowed to fall off the roster at the ends of their planned production runs. In the next three years that means millions of development euros saved.
There are no specific quotes in the article, but it’s extremely unusual for a brand new model to be cut loose before the honeymoon period has even ended. We drove it back to back with its sister car, the Toyota Supra, last week.
This news, of course, means that Toyota will be unable to replace the A90 Supra without ramping the price up to a point that would see it competing with the Porsche 911, and we all know that’s a fight that the Toyota badge, however admirable, can’t win. This news, if true, is also another death knell for the Supra.
BMW is said to be working on a range of BEVs instead, including indirect replacements for the i3 and i8, the latter of which could have as much as 544bhp thanks to a new turbocharged engine and larger electric motor. Early reports suggest the ‘i8’, if it still goes by that name, could top 160mph.