According to a report by iMotor, the financial downturn has claimed its latest victim: the BMW Z4 M. A BMW spokesperson told the pub that "Given the current economic crisis there is no business case for a full-on M version of the Z4." Although that's bad news for enthusiasts, there might be a silver lining. Coinciding with an earlier story, BMW may begin offering software upgrades for models fitted with the twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six. The remapped ECU would increase output by around 20 horsepower (for a net of 326 hp) and a slight bump in torque, and will almost certainly be offered on the new Z4.
There's also talk of a M Sport package for the 135i that would include a new body kit, larger wheels, a retuned suspension and an M-branded steering wheel.
While we're disappointed about the still-born Z4 M, the obvious question is why is BMW developing M models of the X5 and X6? According to the same source, both of the hotted-up CUVs were signed off before the auto market tanked.