2002 BMW Z8
Year of manufacture2002
Ben Price, Bradenton, Florida (acquired new via Keeler BMW in 2002)
Current Owner (acquired in 2009)
The BMW Z8 was a limited-production version of the sensational Z07 concept car designed by Chris Bangle, Henrik Fisker, and Scott Lempert. Utilizing an all-aluminum space frame and coachwork, the compound curves of this lightweight roadster evoked memories of the iconic 1956 BMW 507.
Now regarded as perhaps the greatest roadster to come from BMW, the Z8 was hand-built in limited numbers at the company’s Munich facility. With the Z8, the German automaker knew it was producing something timeless and classic and took the unusual step of assuring a 50-year parts supply for the exclusive roadster, thereby ensuring its long-term collectibility.
The Z8’s crown jewel is its engine – the 394 hp, four-cam V-8 borrowed from the high-performance M5 sedan. When placed in the 500-pounds-lighter roadster, the performance was beyond reproach.
Car and Driver magazine likened the car to “a hugely refined and sophisticated (Shelby) Cobra,” when, in a period road test, the Z8 offered superior handling, acceleration, and braking to its rival, the Ferrari 360 Modena. “In truth, the Z8’s visual charisma is so powerful that just sitting in this car with the engine off is more fun than driving many other cars. Then when you press the starter button – set apart, also a tribute to the past – another entire level of excitement begins.”
The retro-inspired interior of the car is as evocative as its coachwork. Car and Driver said, “The dashboard is a painted plastic panel that runs the full width, recalling the steel dashboards used in cars almost a half-century ago. The instruments are mounted in the center of this panel, shaded by a neatly integrated hood and angled toward the driver but still quite legible to the passenger. The steering wheel has three spokes, each of which consists of four thin metal rods, another styling gesture recalling a bygone time.”
Showing less than 1,500 miles at the time of cataloguing, the example offered here is in exemplary condition. Delivered new in 2002 through Keeler Motor Car Company of Latham, New York, this Z8 has had only two private owners. The car’s low mileage and ownership history have been independently verified through CARFAX documentation and registration receipts.
Regularly exercised and kept in a climate-controlled collection for nearly the last decade, this Z8 comes with a comprehensive file of recent dealer service receipts and a full complement of books, tools, and accessories.
In an attractive color combination from a discerning long-term owner, this BMW Z8 offers an opportunity to acquire a modern roadster with evocative flair – a car that is now being recognized as one of the German automaker’s most exciting creations of all time.