BMW Zagato Roadster Debuts in Pebble Beach

BMW sponsored this year’s Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, and the star of the show was undoubtedly the BMW Zagato Coupe. The car was a Z4-based coupe with traditional proportions. It proved to be an interesting blend of Italian and German design sensibilities. Rather than a Zagato one-off done without the blessing of the manufacturer, the two companies’ design staff worked on the car jointly. The result was fully sanctioned by BMW as an official Vmax concept – meaning it is fully registered, crash tested, smog certified and the like.

At Pebble Beach, BMW is introducing a follow up – the Zagato Roadster. According to BMW, it was created “in just six weeks work of lavish hand craftsmanship.” That isn’t just six weeks of building either, it is from the first design idea. Of course, they already had the basis there with th Coupe, but it is still impressive nonetheless.

The decision to offer a Roadster model was made by Adrian van Hooydonk, Senior Vice President BMW Group Design and Andrea Zagato after the first one was so well-received. “This car is not designed only as an elegant convertible, but also as a masculine and extremely dynamic sports car which evokes a powerful driving experience,” says Zagato chief designer Norihiko Harada, describing the design philosophy behind the BMW Zagato Roadster.

The front end remains the same, once again featuring the kidney grille with “Z” shaped mesh. Zagato’s collaboration means the car is much swoopier and more dynamic than any production BMWs; inset sculpting can be found everywhere you look. The car is even said to retain Zagato’s signature double-bubble roof, only in convertible form. Details really make this car; things like the subtle propeller-inspired wheels and airplane-wing roll bars that pay tribute to shared aviation history. The BMW Zagato partnership seems to be working out really well, and we wouldn’t be surprised if more came of it in the future. More as in a production project? Time will tell.

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