For the 2023 model year, the Toyota Supra finally got an available manual gearbox as an answer to the growing demand from customers. This still isn’t the case when it comes to the mechanically related BMW Z4 M40i, but there are new positive signs that next year we could finally see a three-pedal option for the speedy roadster.
There have been rumours that BMW is working on a shift-your-own-gears version of the six-cylinder Z4 for the model’s facelift, but when it arrived, the six-speed manual was nowhere to be found. While we are certain the version with the eight-speed automatic won’t lose its sales crown to the manual transmission model, there has been continuous interest from BMW enthusiasts and, according to a new report, their calls might be finally answered for the 2024 model year.
Gallery: 2023 BMW Z4
BMW Blog has “learned through sources, and confirmed by other industry insiders” that 2024 MY has always been the target for the launch of the three-pedal six-cylinder Z4. During a presentation of the refreshed Z4, a representative of the online publication managed to get some form of hint from the automaker that it is indeed considering finally launching a six-speed manual for the Z4 M40i. Not quite the confirmation we were hoping for but still a positive sign.
And, honestly, a stick shift Z4 M40i looks closer than ever today. Toyota already installs a BMW-derived manual into the Supra with the same six-cylinder engine, which means it is technically possible. We also believe BMW doesn’t need to invest a ton of money into research and development as there are applications of that 3.0 engine already available with a manual gearbox. The rest is just clever marketing and correct timing.
A six-cylinder roadster with a manual transmission and a weight that is lower than the M3 and M4? This surely sounds like a winning recipe and we can only keep our fingers crossed it will happen. We don’t want to go too far, but to a certain extent, a manual Z4 M40i even sounds like a future collectable to us.