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Hey chaps,

Running on from the thread title I thought I’d give my view on the new Z4 and 718 having driven both.

The Zed has been out now since March this year, a completely new design from the chassis up along with engines in collaboration with Toyota with their new Supra. The Zed replaces the old E89 Z4, a very soft cruiser car, in no way a sports car, too soft and heavy with a very questionable chassis and dead as a dead thing steering feel. Good meaty engines however, but now a very dated car and severely lacking in toys which adorn new cars nowadays. Having said that I’ve still got a E89 35is, 340bhp from a twin turbo straight six, forged internals as standard and a very good DCT box. As an everyday car that you can drop the roof on its spot on, it’s my third one....

The brief from BMW was to build a sports car capable of taking the fight to the 718, so they threw away the folding hardtop as in the E89 and went back to fabric to save weight. Next was another straight six with a single twin scroll turbo in the flagship M40i, producing approx 340bhp again. A ground up new chassis, longer overhangs and wider track, large four pot front calipers, and a new electric steering rack. Adaptive dampers complete the chassis. Nothing was transferred over from the old car. Cabin wise it gets new up to date screens and infotainment system, adaptive cruise, HUD, etc. So is it any good? Being truthful I wanted it to be, a fully loaded Zed is 55k, whereas a fully loaded 718 GTS is as you all know, a big saving. It was looking good, lap times on the Nurburgring in testing were superb, a smidge faster than the M2. So I tested one, knowing it was between the Zed and a GTS. The simple conclusion was I was utterly bored senseless after two hours out, in fact I took the car back early on the test afternoon. The problem is it’s, imho, more of the same but with admittedly a better chassis than the old car. It’s far too big, still too heavy, in fact it’s 40kg heavier than the old car, despite losing the hardtop..! The seats are very limited in adjustment, there’s still no steering feel, the top HarmonKardon stereo is rubbish with no high end offering like Burmester. it doesn’t have cooled seats on offer, etc. It still doesn’t feel like a sports car, it feels cheap inside if you ignore the fancy screens, in fact it relies on them to add a bit of flair. It’s again a good daily run to work or motorway car, but as a fun, pure driving fun car it falls way way short. The 718 is everything the Zed isn’t. Personally I don’t think it’s worth anywhere near 55k, 40 tops for a brand new fully loaded flagship car would be about bearable if you must have new, I’d wait a year and let it dive bomb in depreciation, they’ll have to give these things away to shift them.

Why do we buy a 718? If it’s because it’s so **** good at what it’s designed for then that’s the exact reason why I wouldn’t buy a G29 Zed4 because it’s no **** good at doing what’s its designed for. BMW have lost their way, the true M cars are extinct, the new stuff is boring, badged up marketing rubbish that is way over priced. They are relying on huge engines in the supposed M cars to try to get over how stale the cars are. I’ve got a 37k mile Z4M roadster, it’s as agricultural as an old Massy Ferguson tractor, a mad as a box of frogs engine and the sophistication of a house brick. But it’s FUN...it uses the engine, running gear, diff and brakes from the E36 iconic M3 CSL. It tries to kill you, but if it fails and you show it whose boss it rewards you with a good old dose of smiles, something the new BM’s simply don’t deliver, it’s the same with the 718, stuff the exhaust sounds, get over it, it still sounds good, and it’s FUN...!!

Imho Porsche have absolutely nothing to worry about from Munich, in fact I bet they’re sniggering like naughty school boys finding their first dirty magazine.
 

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Two major reasons caused me to buy a Boxster instead of continuing with a new Z4 (I previously had a 2002 Z3 and a 2008 1st gen Z4). First, the new Z4 is not available with a manual transmission. I am certainly not a good enough driver to outdrive a good automatic transmission but I like the fun of shifting. No automatic can provide the same thrill of a sudden manual downshift using a real clutch pedal accompanied by a lot of throttle. Second, it has Toyota DNA in its core - this is very bad. I would easily agree Toyota/Lexus manufacture the most reliable and refined cars out there but they are also fatally boring. There is too much about Toyota products I do not like from the silly confusing instrument clusters, too many unnecessary and not obvious buttons all around the dash and console, and too many interlocks to protect me against myself. I delayed pulling the trigger on my Boxster until I learned what the new Z4 was going to be but it was an instant decision to avoid it as soon as I learned no manual clutch and Toyota joint design.
 

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...No automatic can provide the same thrill of a sudden manual downshift using a real clutch pedal accompanied by a lot of throttle...
WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, you don’t know what you are talking about. The first time you experience the PDK doing a double downshift, the world as you know it changes forever. Two distinct downshifts in less than half a second!

Even the F1 downshifting (or manually downshifting the PDK for that matter) doesn’t approach the experience.

I’ve driven sticks all my life, the PDK changed everything. This is no torque converter, or even Tiptronic. This is a world apart.
 

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WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, you don’t know what you are talking about. The first time you experience the PDK doing a double downshift, the world as you know it changes forever. Two distinct downshifts in less than half a second!

Even the F1 downshifting (or manually downshifting the PDK for that matter) doesn’t approach the experience.

I’ve driven sticks all my life, the PDK changed everything. This is no torque converter, or even Tiptronic. This is a world apart.
I think you completely missed my point. My preference for a manual transmission has little to do with respect to getting the best performance/acceleration possible. It has everything to do with my enjoyment of working the clutch, throttle, and stick (i.e. playing with the machinery). No matter how incredibly the whiz bang PDK performs, and I dont doubt it performs incredibly well, there is something big missing when all it takes to get this performance is a push on the gas pedal. The integral involvement of the driver (me) working the machinery (clutch, gear shift, gas pedal) makes all the difference even though I cannot begin to out-drive a manual gearbox fully controlled by a computer.

So, I feel compelled to repeat your words to you, "WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, you don’t know what you are talking about." because you completely miss the point that for me, the guy that wrote the check for exactly the toy I wanted and thoroughly enjoy everyday, a big and intergral part of the fun, would be missing by letting the machinery do the work (albeit much better). Actually if performance and the thrill of acceleration is the ultimate goal, an all electric performance car would be the choice. However, similarly, without the sound of the exhaust and feel of the engine in my seat, the experience would be lame for me (as it is driving mt GF's hybrid Lexus).
 

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Discussion Starter #6
@John-e89, You are spot on.
BMW has absolutely lost the plot.
Love your description of the Z4M; I still have my Z4MC :)
Hi, they just get under your skin don’t they? I hate the thing at times, in traffic or rough roads it’s nightmare....I’m getting on, 52...not up for my teeth rattling out anymore....but get them on a smooth winding road and you’ll have more smiles per mile than their price now has any right to let you..! If I can keep mine, not sure yet, I’ve got some KW V3’s to go on to tame the ride a little. RTAB’s, Vibratechnic engine mounts, dial in -1.5 deg camber then it should be as planted as it gets for road.

What colour is yours sir..?
 

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Hi, they just get under your skin don’t they? I hate the thing at times, in traffic or rough roads it’s nightmare....I’m getting on, 52...not up for my teeth rattling out anymore....but get them on a smooth winding road and you’ll have more smiles per mile than their price now has any right to let you..! If I can keep mine, not sure yet, I’ve got some KW V3’s to go on to tame the ride a little. RTAB’s, Vibratechnic engine mounts, dial in -1.5 deg camber then it should be as planted as it gets for road.

What colour is yours sir..?
I have a TON of experience with the E86/85 platform.
You will love what the V3s do for the car.
I also have the Vibratech's and the are fantastic.
For the RTABs I went with the Bimmerworld sealed spericals, they are great.

Mine is a Great White shark :)
 

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I think you completely missed my point. My preference for a manual transmission has little to do with respect to getting the best performance/acceleration possible. It has everything to do with my enjoyment of working the clutch, throttle, and stick (i.e. playing with the machinery). No matter how incredibly the whiz bang PDK performs, and I dont doubt it performs incredibly well, there is something big missing when all it takes to get this performance is a push on the gas pedal. The integral involvement of the driver (me) working the machinery (clutch, gear shift, gas pedal) makes all the difference even though I cannot begin to out-drive a manual gearbox fully controlled by a computer.

So, I feel compelled to repeat your words to you, "WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, you don’t know what you are talking about." because you completely miss the point that for me, the guy that wrote the check for exactly the toy I wanted and thoroughly enjoy everyday, a big and intergral part of the fun, would be missing by letting the machinery do the work (albeit much better). Actually if performance and the thrill of acceleration is the ultimate goal, an all electric performance car would be the choice. However, similarly, without the sound of the exhaust and feel of the engine in my seat, the experience would be lame for me (as it is driving mt GF's hybrid Lexus).
In your initial post you pontificated 'no automatic...' etc etc without the caveat 'for me' which removes somewhat the pontificating style. For me, I am getting sick and tired of hearing 'sound makes the true sports car, the wailing... etc etc' and other curmudgeonly opinions.

I understand that for some people, older than I am, the proper sportscar is what they pined for in their youth (say the Jaguar E-type, the Mustang Gt500 or the Corvette).

However, we are not going to go back to try synchronizing carburators, because it is the curmudgeonly thing to do, are we? 🤐

How about bringing back the mechanical advance and mechanical brakes? The level of satisfaction of taking a hairpin while steering and retarding with one hand while braking with the other and double clutching to downshift the asynchronous gear while nudging the gas pedal and downshifting with ...the other hand, must approach mortal perfection!:eek:

Regarding your other comment, about an electric car, I was headed that way when I thought, wait a minute... how about a Porsche first?

So I give the EV industry a couple of years to sort themselves out, before we replace my wife's Bimmer with a fast and practical EV.

Anyway, as you said in a nutshell, whatever floats your boat... Peace!
 

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I understand that for some people, older than I am, the proper sportscar is what they pined for in their youth (say the Jaguar E-type, the Mustang Gt500 or the Corvette).

However, we are not going to go back to try synchronizing carburators, because it is the curmudgeonly thing to do, are we? 🤐
OMG Yes, you are so correct!!!!! A 1958 red with white accent C1 Corvette - That might even be better in my garage than my new Boxster. In high school classes, instead of taking notes, I was listing on my lined yellow note pad exactly how I wanted to order a 427 Chevy or new Corvette. I did indeed pine for these great machines in my youth and still do. Certainly they do not have the wonderful technology readily available now but that does not matter at all because they were so much fun and so satisfying at a visceral level. They also were very effective for getting the girls attentions and at that age that was very important.

And setting up dual car carburetors in my garage - one can only wish (My next door neighbor has a 60s something GTO in his garage so I just might be able to help him do this one day). I think this would be a really fun thing to do and really don't see why it would be curmudgeonly. Curmudgeonly is defined as "(especially of an old person) bad-tempered and negative." At almost 74 I am sure I am classified as an old person but I don't think restoring/tuning carbs would elicit bad temper and negativity.

With respect to at least a Jaguar XKE, it was not until circa 77 that I fell in love (at least briefly) with a gorgeous tall blond and her fully restored XKE. However, although I seem to remeber how very well the XKE handled, it just did not have the raw visceral feel that the 1958/59/60 C1 Corvette or big ass 427 Chevy's did. I remember a friend with a 1964 GTO with dual chrome plated carbs. I think it also had a wonderful Hurst Shifter. I certainly would not trade my Boxster for that GTO but it was a car that certainly turned heads, caused a lot of wonderful noise polution, was fast as ****, and was just a lot of fun. I was never into the Mustangs or Dodge products.
 

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However, we are not going to go back to try synchronizing carburators, because it is the curmudgeonly thing to do, are we? 🤐
I hope not. I spent too much time bent over the carbs of my GT6. Also too much time getting nauseous under the fascia of the Fiat 124 and the Spitfire. Don't need to do that again.
 

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My 1966 GTO had the tri-power option (three 2-BBL carbs in a row). But since it ran on the middle two-barrel until I gave it some gas, it was not that much trouble to keep it set once I got the linkage to the other two adjusted.
 

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I am certainly not a good enough driver to outdrive a good automatic transmission but I like the fun of shifting.
I'd argue the PDK in my GTS has made me a better driver, in that I can keep both hands on the wheel at all times. For instance yesterday, I was on a very narrow coastal road with lots of sharp turns and a tiny stone wall leading down to the ocean. Having both hands on the wheel and manipulating the transmission with the paddles was absolutely exhilarating. Allowed me to drive better through there than ever before.
 

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I'd argue the PDK in my GTS has made me a better driver, in that I can keep both hands on the wheel at all times. For instance yesterday, I was on a very narrow coastal road with lots of sharp turns and a tiny stone wall leading down to the ocean. Having both hands on the wheel and manipulating the transmission with the paddles was absolutely exhilarating. Allowed me to drive better through there than ever before.
I'm curious, do you prefer one of the driving modes, e.g., SPORT, with the PDK when on a demanding road like you described? The reason I ask is because when we were shopping for a Porsche, we looked at 981s with and without PDK. Drove one of each, as well as 718s (base) with one of each. It didn't seem to me at the time that the 2.0L was as happy mated to PDK as the 6-cyl. was. However, when driving the 2.0L with the 6M, the engine seemed VERY happy. Since owning the car (a 718 6M base) for a year now, I've found I don't really like driving it in "normal" mode. I don't see much reason to have such a finely tuned machine without having all the tuning at my disposal. I think the 6M shifts easier in that mode, too. Just wondering what your take is on using the modes with regards to the PDK experience mated to the bigger engine.
 

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Early in the summer I drove from Houston to NYC following the scenic route, (Talimena Scenic drive, the Ozarks, the Great Smoky Mountains, The Blue Ridge Parkway and the Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah National Park).

I had the PDK on Auto and the Mode on Sport. I have downshifted manually almost all of the turns (almost because the PDK beat me to it a couple of times) and upshifted manually about half the upshifts. The paddle shifting is great fun!

My rear tires have seen most of their life speed by them... :p

Lots of fun was had!;)
 

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I'm curious, do you prefer one of the driving modes, e.g., SPORT, with the PDK when on a demanding road like you described? The reason I ask is ... It didn't seem to me at the time that the 2.0L was as happy mated to PDK
In non-sport mode the PDK shifts earlier than I'd like. That's the real reason I use sport mode most of the time. If that's how you test drove one it would explain your reaction to it. In sport mode the 2.0 is quite happy.
 

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I'm curious, do you prefer one of the driving modes, e.g., SPORT, with the PDK when on a demanding road like you described? The reason I ask is because when we were shopping for a Porsche, we looked at 981s with and without PDK. Drove one of each, as well as 718s (base) with one of each. It didn't seem to me at the time that the 2.0L was as happy mated to PDK as the 6-cyl. was. However, when driving the 2.0L with the 6M, the engine seemed VERY happy. Since owning the car (a 718 6M base) for a year now, I've found I don't really like driving it in "normal" mode. I don't see much reason to have such a finely tuned machine without having all the tuning at my disposal. I think the 6M shifts easier in that mode, too. Just wondering what your take is on using the modes with regards to the PDK experience mated to the bigger engine.
I should preface that I’ve only put about 1800 miles on it to date. So on the aggressive roads or roads with tight turns, I’ve been using Sport+. I love having the PDK in the higher rpm range and also like the engine braking via more aggressive downshifting. Acceleration in both Sport and Sport+ puts a smile on my face each time. I haven’t detected with my butt dyno any negative impact having the PDK mated to the 2.5.

When shopping for my 718, I drove a 718 6M S without sport chrono, it was super nice, but my lasting impression was how different the clutch felt coming from a decade of BMW/MINI ownership :)
 

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I should preface that I’ve only put about 1800 miles on it to date. So on the aggressive roads or roads with tight turns, I’ve been using Sport+. I love having the PDK in the higher rpm range and also like the engine braking via more aggressive downshifting. Acceleration in both Sport and Sport+ puts a smile on my face each time. I haven’t detected with my butt dyno any negative impact having the PDK mated to the 2.5.

When shopping for my 718, I drove a 718 6M S without sport chrono, it was super nice, but my lasting impression was how different the clutch felt coming from a decade of BMW/MINI ownership :)
"Butt dyno" lol :D, good one. I suspected the PDK would pair better with the bigger engine. In my limited exposure, it seemed built that way. But after reading other responses, it could have been just a bad first impression owing to a less-than-thorough test drive.
 

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Early in the summer I drove from Houston to NYC following the scenic route, (Talimena Scenic drive, the Ozarks, the Great Smoky Mountains, The Blue Ridge Parkway and the Skyline Drive in the Shenandoah National Park).

I had the PDK on Auto and the Mode on Sport. I have downshifted manually almost all of the turns (almost because the PDK beat me to it a couple of times) and upshifted manually about half the upshifts. The paddle shifting is great fun!

My rear tires have seen most of their life speed by them... :p

Lots of fun was had!;)
Wow. What an awesome road trip. Would love to do something like that one day. I bet you really get to know the car over such a variety of roads.
 

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In non-sport mode the PDK shifts earlier than I'd like. That's the real reason I use sport mode most of the time. If that's how you test drove one it would explain your reaction to it. In sport mode the 2.0 is quite happy.
That makes perfect sense. I would bet we never got to sport mode. Seeing how it impacts my reaction to the car with the 6M, it only makes sense it would do the same with PDK.
 

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The only thing “sport” does on a 6M is change throttle mapping (and engine mount stiffness and rev matching if you also have Sport Chrono). It does not have any direct effect on the transmission.
 
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