• Jan 19th 2006 at 8:00AM
  • 11

Apparently, BMW's high-end Z8 roadster really was best left on the show-stand. The gorgeous piece of 507-influenced sculpture rolled into dealerships in 1999, at which point no one could be forgiven for wanting to place red velvet ropes 'round its perimeter.  Well, Z8 owners, long convinced of their convertible's collectible status, might now be considering a different use for those ropes-- to strangle the company's engineers with.

According to Business Week, owners are reporting that sections of the car's aluminum chassis are prone to warping. In specific, the James Bond special's shock towers are apparently given to distorting. The flexible uprights make themselves known by wrenching some of the car's sensuous curves into new and unintended forms, leaving the cars (to say nothing their owners) shaken and stirred. Due to the inherent difficulty of working on the Z8's aluminum structure, even a rudimentary fix could cost tens of thousands of dollars. The question is, who is going to pay for it?

The issue, first discovered by members of the Z8 Club of Munich has now gained sufficient traction among owner's groups that BMW has been pressured into launching an inquiry.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      I guess they didn't do a very good job of FEA
      • 9 Years Ago
      BMW=Bauen Mitt Warcrimes.
      • 9 Years Ago
      What about cars out of warranty? Some of these cars are six or seven years old now, and I don't think BMW has a ten year warranty, probably the standard 3 years. It is a manufacturer's defect, though, but the warranty has expired, so if BMW wants to get out of fixing them, I suppose they could.
      • 9 Years Ago
      This is in addition to problems that have arisen on the Z3 body type - many owners of the higher powered M coupes and roadsters (especially the last years with the 315hp S54 type engine) have reported structural problems with their rear differential mounts. Keep in mind this is made out of good old steel.
      The mounts, which are stamped, can develop cracks initiating at one of the radiused corners. This can lead to failure of the diff mount and collapse of the rear suspension. Additionally, there is a cross member in the rear that has shown evidence of poor spot welds.
      I was in the market for an M coupe until I read about this problem, now I am having second thoughts.
      • 9 Years Ago
      There is some established precedence for BMW repairing cars out of warranty. They Nikasil engine coating problem of their early- to mid-90s V8s come to mind. Ford made similar out-of-warranty repairs on the Taurus SHO's V8 engine.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Where did you get BMW made the Z8 just for the movie? I thought everyone knew the story behind the Z8 already.

      Basically BMW's Board of Management went for a ride on some vintage cars. After which they gave the directive to create a roaster that was to be the spiritual successor to the 507. The assignment was given to Henrik Fisker.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Even though this article has nothing to do with GM, I knew sooner or later someone would make a negative comparison. It never fails on this site!!
      • 9 Years Ago
      Nicholas, I find it funny that you make an unsubstantiated claim, and than rip off the story and put it on your website.

      As for BMW, this is unfortunate. They may have to bite the bullet on this one. Too bad, because the Z8 is a gorgeous vehicle in person. One of those cars that I would never own yet, as an enthusiast, I'm just happy that it exists.
      • 9 Years Ago
      It is amazing how people put a spin on a story like this. This is a total failure on this vehicles development process. Point being, if BMW let something major like this be released for production, it makes you wonder what else has slipped through.
      • 9 Years Ago
      BMW made this car for the movie. They just thought they could get away from developing it for the actual road. Quite a disappointment for Munich's "Ultimate Driving Machine".

      • 9 Years Ago
      It's a serious manufacturing defect that affects the safety of the car. BMW should pay, power to the owners.
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