BMW continues development work on the Z5, which will succeed the Z4 in its lineup for the 2019 model year. These latest spy shots again show off the Z5’s classic sports-car proportions during testing on European roads. As expected, the roadster will switch to a cloth top instead of the retractable hardtop the Z4 uses.The much-anticipated Z5 will be based on a rear-wheel-drive platform that’s jointly developed with Toyota. Rumors persist Toyota’s version will mark the return of the Supra name, though the Japanese automaker has been silent on the matter. Reports say the cars could be assembled by Magna Steyr in Austria.
We expect the Z5 will run four- and six-cylinder engines, and the soft top will help the roadster reduce weight and likely improve performance. It’s also possible BMW will build a fixed-roof Z5. We predict the Z5 will appear on the auto show circuit within the next year. The long-running Z4 launched for 2009.