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FEATURES | 7 out of 10
Z4is buyers get a magnificent-sounding and specially tuned exhaust that sings a raspy melody best experienced with the top down, of course
Car and Driver
door sills, gearlever, floor mats and even the driver's footrest all carry the evocative M logo
Edmunds' Inside Line
The major fault of the 'box's setup are the paddle shifters...They're confusing as hell, not to mention unnatural, cheap in hand, and look as if they've been pulled off an early 1990s Big Foot Power Wheels.
The iDrive interface, although improved from earlier versions, is still not the most intuitive.
The 2013 BMW Z4 lands in an odd middle ground in the U.S. performance-car market. With the base 28i starting at under $50,000, even with an option or two, it's an impressive, well-finished, and actually somewhat luxurious sports car for the money. On the other hand, a loaded 35is can total well over $70k—which well exceeds the normal top end for an Audi TT or even a Mercedes-Benz SLK.
There are a lot of tempting options on the Z4, though; navigation, dynamic cruise control, park assist, and automatic high-beam headlights are some of the possibilities, and the interior can be optioned with a wide range of finishes and materials.
All said, it's the Z4's folding hardtop that might be its best feature; it can raise or lower in 20 seconds with a console switch, and it quickly transforms from an open-top roadster to a cozy coupe. The automatic dual-zone climate control smartly functions differently depending on whether or not the top is down.
The cabin of the Z4 includes a decent list of standard features such as adaptive xenon headlights, cruise control, heated mirrors, Bluetooth hands-free connectivity, and a sound system with an iPod/USB port, aux-in port, and HD radio. For 2013, the base Z4 28i gains several new standard features, including power front seats (with driver-side memory), dual-zone automatic air conditioning, a universal garage-door opener, and ambient lighting.
Tick the right option boxes, and you'll have a high-tech touring machine. BMW Apps (for full smartphone integration), BMW Assist telematics, and a full-featured navigation system are all on offer, and the nav system includes iDrive, in its much-improved and streamlined fourth-generation form, plus an 80-GB hard drive system with 15 GB set aside for personal music storage.
Available interior appearance, materials, and color customization is also extensive.
Standard features and value improve for 2013 in the BMW Z4—but there's still plenty of temptation to add options and really push the price skyward.