The BMW Z4 has officially been put to pasture. The German brand didn’t make a big thing of it — offering no fanfare or press release — but according to a publication called BimmerToday, the final Z4 rolled off the production line on August 22. On sale since 2002, the sporty cruiser offered a fun, comfortable alternative to the Porsche Boxsters and Audi TTs of the world, while also providing a hopped-up M version in its first generation.
But we’re not really here to talk about the Z4. We’re here to talk about what’s next.
For years, rumors about a Z4 replacement called the Z5 have swirled, and these reports are of particular interest because of BMW’s relationship with Toyota. Allegedly, the Z5 will share its chassis with the successor to the Toyota Supra, with the engine being developed by the Germans. We’re crossing our fingers for the M3’s 425-horsepower inline-six, but that’s just us. In the end, we could essentially see one vehicle with two names akin to the Scion FR-S and Subaru BR-Z, but the final products could end up being very different from each other. It’s just too early to tell.
On Toyota’s end, the time couldn’t be more perfect for a Supra comeback. Both the Acura NSX and the Ford GT have gone through high-profile resurgences lately, and although the Supra isn’t quite on the level of those two, its passionate fan base would welcome a follow-up with open arms. Specifics of the car are few and far between, but it’s likely the car would take styling cues from Toyota’s stunning FT-1 concept and feature all-wheel drive.
Last we heard, Toyota was planning to debut a production-ready concept by the end of 2016. If things keep going as planned, the Z4’s replacement shouldn’t be too far behind.