25 years of the BMW Z1 Roadster
BMW celebrate the 25th anniversary of the BMW Z1 this year. It was 1988 when the car was first Z1 was introduced in Punta Ala, Italy. At the time the car was a ground breaker, a magnificent piece of machinery that got everyone’s pulses racing. The car was a great piece of inspiration to what we today in the Z4.
Back in 1988 when the Z1 was released the design came across as extremely futuristic. The geniuses at BMW were praised for their magnificent work. Back then such a car was considered a massively impossible task. The fact that BMW managed to get such a vehicle out there showed the resilience and determination of the company.
The BMW Z1 was a replacement to the spectacular and highly successful BMW 507, another two seater sports car.
The possibility of developing the BMW Z1 came about when executives gave designers, engineers and technicians the freedom to develop something creative. The team behind the development of the Z1 was the BMW Technik GmbH. Originally the project was meant to be just a study. After the concept was showcased at the Frankfurt Motor Show back in 1987, it was clear from the public response that the car had to be made. The car received such an amazing response that a German car magazine offered a great amount of money to purchase the concept car that was on the stand.
Production of the vehicle started off slowly, with BMW offering to build only six copies of the Z1 for paying customers to begin with. However that figure rose to a staggering 4,000 by the time production had started in the later stages of 1999.
By June 1991 around 8,000 BMW Z1’s were created and sold on. Apparently there is still one driving about with it clocking an amazing 205,000 miles.
The way the vehicle was made was very innovative to say the least. The body was made from a special type of plastic which at the time proved to be great move. The material was very strong and light at the same time. With the car had a collision at a speed of up to 2.5 MPH, the body panels were smartly able to form back to it’s original shape without any damage being noticeable.
The doors were able to open electronically. No other production vehicle during this era was able to drive along with the doors open.
Happy 25th Birthday to the BMW Z1.