The BMW Z3 roadster is the company’s own version of the MGF and MX-5, but offered at a more affordable price compared to the Mercedes SLK. In terms of appearance, the Z3 is fashionable, fun, plus it appeals to both male and female markets. But how it fares as an actual sports car that still delivers style involves a complicated debate. Ultimately it’s up to your taste and preference, so read on to see how else this car is on the road, in terms of appearance, and in other essential driving and riding aspects.
The Z3 is successful as a family saloon, relying on 1.8 and 1.9 engines that are quite tame when compared to the MGF and MX-5. Roadholding and safety is no problem but the Z3’s performance could use a little more punch. Other engines available within the range are the 2.8-, 3.0-, and 2.2-litre, yet the 3.2-litre stands out in terms of giving the Z3 the performance it requires and deserves. In terms of standard equipment, the Zr is complete with its standard air conditioning, electric windows, but only the more powerful variations include leather and traction control. You can also add a powered hood and hardtop to the equipment for additional function and flair.
Although the Z3 is only a two-seater, both passengers get enough space all throughout. Having the roof up makes the interior more comfortable, but be sure to keep it down if your model does not include the rear wind deflector. Wind noise is kept at a minimum so you’re promised a peaceful ride all throughout and at high speeds.
Boot size is more than enough for a weekend long trip. Plus there’s extra space added behind the seats when the roof is put up and lockable cubby holders in the cockpit for smaller items.
The rear suspension of the Z3 is derived from the E30 3-Series. Since its predecessor is an unsophisticated and older model, the ride tends to become unrefined on rougher or not as smooth roads. Thankfully there’s more than enough grip to keep handling as safe as possible.
Insurance is steep given that it’s a BMW model, but if you have the capability to back up this financial choice, then you won’t have any problems dealing with the other added and included costs. Expect road tax to start at £260.00.
Although unlike most BMWs the Z3 was manufactured in America and not in Germany, the model’s reliability has proven to be just as excellent as its predecessors and other BMW models. Owners simply have to schedule regular maintenance; no problems have been reported in the engine, body, and other parts. Expect the Z3’s parts to work well throughout the years.
Overall the Z3 works in terms of being an excellent car in itself. But how it fares on the road is still insignificant compared to BMW’s greater models. Nonetheless if you’re looking for a reliable two-seater to take on regular trips and/or for that weekend getaway, then there should be hesitance in considering the Z3.
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