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  #11  
Old 07-24-2008, 09:53 AM
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I think the greater reason here is the savings BMW will get from building the X3 here versus exporting it from Europe. The higher volume of the X3 and the declining trend in the roadster market pushed BMW to do this. It also makes sense cost-wise/part-wise to have all your SUV production in one place.

As for sales the Z4 could never match the momentum the Z3 had. People forget many things when comparing the two cars: the difference in price (Z3 had a 4 banger since inception, the Z4 got it much much later), number of competitors (the TT & SLK weren't there when the Z3 started, all the Germans were playing the premium roadster game when the Z4 arrived) and the fact that the economic factors came into play during the Z4's lifetime (causing the roadster market to shrink enormously - none of the German's second round of roadsters from the 2000's sold nearly as-well as the sheer quantity they sold in the late 90's).

In my opinion, most of the stories about the Z4 "not selling well", was really a picture painted by auto press' as a way to justify their Bangle hatred. We can see the same pattern emerge when auto press' claimed that BMW was rushing a redesigned 7 to market early, every year after that the E65 debuted, and that BMW was extremely disappointed with the sales figures of that car - both which were untrue, the E65 refresh came mid-cycle as planned, and the E65 went on to be the most popular selling 7 series ever. Same thing with the Z4. It's Bangle, it's new, we don't like the design, it's not selling well. Therefore I think the Z4 suffered the most in the public's eye from it's perception.

All in all the Z4 had a pretty impressive run, and last time I checked (about a year ago) was still the leader in the roadster class by a large margin. Or maybe I'm just biased because I own one, you decide.
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  #12  
Old 07-24-2008, 10:03 AM
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I happen to like the Z4, but from what I have heard sales were not up to par for what BMW projected. I could be wrong. I don't know the sales figures or what mark BMW was hoping to hit, but even BMW's car club magazine "Roundel" spoke on numerous occasions of the slow Z4 sales. I guess I have heard it so much (even from pro-BMW publications) that I just started beleiving it.

I agree that it makes sense to move the Z4 out and have all the SAV's produced under one roof. Especially as most SAV's have historically been purchased here in the US anyway.
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  #13  
Old 07-24-2008, 10:54 AM
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Volume is critical right now.The Spartanburg BMW plant is the largest automotive exporter in the US. Due to the exchange rate. The original plan was to build cars here for the US market, but that was when the exchange rate was 180 degrees! The other reason (and secondary) has something to do with the design, and the 'other' plant having a lot of lessons learned with this particular design feature.
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  #14  
Old 07-24-2008, 11:01 AM
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No dog in this fight as I don't own one and never really wanted one,
though the few I've driven have been "pleasant"...
Sales of the Z4, in the US, were just 10,000 in '07, and ~28,000
worldwide. The car never reached sales projections, imo, for whatever
reason.
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  #15  
Old 07-24-2008, 11:50 AM
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The Z4 design was a bit ahead of its time, but it's aged well and looks very good at the end of its 7-year run. Even Clarkson admits he's grown to like the styling of the roadster.

It's a swell roadster, for sure. But I'd never consider getting one. It's too sporty.
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  #16  
Old 07-24-2008, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzNMpower32
... I'd never consider getting one. It's too sporty.
I agree with what you said in another thread, you are much older than your actual age. j/k.
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Old 07-24-2008, 01:42 PM
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My biggest gripe with the Z4:
They're all fookin' slushboxes!
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  #18  
Old 07-24-2008, 02:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Meiac09
My biggest gripe with the Z4:
They're all fookin' slushboxes!


You don't like the manual transmission models?
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Old 07-24-2008, 02:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCL


You don't like the manual transmission models?
I think he is saying that the vast majority of Z4's come with auto's instead of manual/SMG...
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  #20  
Old 07-24-2008, 02:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xx3
I think he is saying that the vast majority of Z4's come with auto's instead of manual/SMG...
OK. Maybe it is a US thing. Just checked dealer inventory (Canada) and found 11 out of 35 listed had automatics. Those are far better percentages than other BMW models, which are overwhelmingly automatics.
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