Granted, the Z4 felt a lot more drowsy and overtaking manoeuvres were much less fun, but the resulting savings made it easier to justify a bit of a blast on the way home.
Practicality was another area in which the Z4 lost sports car points, but not necessarily to its detriment. I needed to transport a hefty load of catering equipment to a family friend’s birthday party and felt the presence of my tatty VW Bora might put a downer on proceedings. Thus, the BMW was pressed into service to carry untold quantities of saucepans, tablecloths and chafing dishes across 22 miles of glorious, potholed countryside Tarmac.
Not only did it swallow the lot (granted, it briefly became a single-seater), but even as I rushed to arrive before the festivities began, I didn’t spill a single teaspoon of my mum’s Thai green curry.
So would I swap the sDrive30i for its more potent M40i sibling? Nope, I’ll stick with the ‘cooking’ variant.
Cruising economy Sport-mode shenanigans are thirsty work, but Eco mode works miracles on a long run.
Interior Difficult to imagine enduring the Z4’s cosy cabin for the daily commute to and from work.
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Can our sports car handle a weekend load on rural roads? - 11th September 2019
At a risk of over-sharing, bad memories of a previous-generation BMW Z4 taint my view of the German sports car. Having spent a week travelling to, from and around Cornwall in a first-generation model driven by an unsuitable boyfriend many years ago, my feelings about the car – a horribly stiff chassis and abominable run-flats – echoed how I felt about my relationship.
Fast forward 10 years: you’ll find a newer, wiser me and a newer, wiser Z4… hopefully. We’re two generations on from the one on which I reminisce: the run-flats are no more and BMW promises true sports car abilities plus more comfort.
Grabbing the keys for a busy weekend, my first concern was luggage space. I needed to fit in belongings for two for a festival and a wedding, plus 20 yoga mats (yes, really). Colleagues reassured me it would be fine. But the reality of most sports cars, including the Z4, is that space isn’t quite as it might be in, say, a Mini 5dr – which has a near identical boot size to the Z4. In the end, it was fine, but tight: we had a couple of bags in a footwell and a few things shoved behind the seats.