For the last generation or so BMW the Roadster has just been sort of hanging out in the lineup getting neglected getting soft around the middle and with every year becoming less competitive with the likes of vehicles like Porsches Boxster or the Jaguar F type, but this 2019 BMW the [UNKNOWN] Drive 30i is the return to form for BMW purest roadster It's got updated style.
It's got an improved suite of dashboard and driver A technologies and a blend of performance and comfort that I think puts it in a sweet spot for this class.
So the sun's up, the tops already down.
Let's head for the hills and see what's new.
The fourth tight two seater chassis is designed for open air motoring and it feels sharp and very sporty despite the suspension, that's a bit on the softer side for a more Grand Touring style of motoring.
It's not so bad if like mine ,your favorite roads are nice and twisty but a little rough around the edges.
Now, our sDrive30i is the lesser of the two Z4 variants just beneath the N40i with the six cylinder.
But despite having a smaller four-cylinder engine, I think that this is still a nice and very gallant variant of the Z4 chassis.
It's a little bit lighter, it's a bit more affordable and And it's no less fun on a twisty bit of road.
Now under the hood we're working with a two liter turbo charged four cylinder engine that makes 255 horsepower and 295 very healthy pound feet of torque.
Which it puts to the rear wheels via an eight speed automatic transmission which is Fine, I mean it shifts fast enough and it's manual setting and an automatic it kicks down willingly when you want it to accelerate, but I'm a little bit disappointed and frankly not surprised that BMW furious roadster doesn't come with a true manual transmission option.
[SOUND] Zero to 60 comes in 5.2 seconds, which is faster than a Miata, but about a tick and a half slower than the six cylinder in 45 variant.
But with a really healthy mid range of torque.
I don't really feel like there's a lack of power here.
Especially because the driving style of this vehicle does lean towards being very relaxed and because I've got such good handling and so much grip that I can carry a good deal of speed through a turn, so I don't have to rely so heavily on the engine to accelerate out of it.
Now the the forest cabin is cozy as is often the case with compact to cedars.
It doesn't really feel like there's much more room in here than in a Miata from the driver's seat though there is more elbow room, but this vehicle is about 16 inches longer overall than the compact monster master.
Like the Miata, it does have some of the worst cupholders in the business where they expect you to open the center console and put your drinks there will they'll get knocked over with your elbow.
Good thing perhaps then there is no manual transmission or I'll be running into those beverages all the time.
Now the rest of the cabin is built a very nice high quality materials including the dashboard technology where we've got high drive 7.0 and BMW's Virtual, digital, cockpit situation going on here.
Now, we've already seen this dashboard tech suite in the X5, the X7, and in the BMW Series Roadster and Coupe and if you want to know why we think it is the best version of the I Drive System, well, you can check out our deep dive on those vehicles Over on the roadshow.com.
And if you don't like this technology well, Apple CarPlay is available so you can bring your own tech though.
Android Auto is still not on the menu.
As an Android user, that makes me feel a bit like a second class citizen.
But at the very least, the Bluetooth connection feels like it's been improved for this generation.
So they're less dropouts and I don't feel so bad about leaving the yards table at home.
[SOUND] Overall, the 2019 BMW Z4 S Drive 30 I feels like a return to form for BMW roadster.
It's very stylish, it's got a lot more features and it's comfortable but still a really fun way to get away from the city and just eat up a great driving road without feeling like you're being punished for it.
Well, that was a fun drive but it's back to the city and back to reality to talk about the price.
The 2019 BMW Z4 sDrive30i starts at 49,700 bucks before destination charges.
So let's just call it a hair over 51k out the door.
However, with all the bells and whistles we've got, we're looking at a $65,000 example here as tested.
And we've got a lot of creature comforts,a lot of drive raid features and pretty much every upgrade that we can get in the rule book, which explains that price.
Also consider that this vehicle is still less expensive than a comparably equipped Porsche Boxster and a much better vehicle.
Albeit maybe not as good looking as jaguars f type.
All of that considered is still looking like a pretty good value for the money and a solid return to the Roadster category for BMWZ four.