A manual gearbox has been introduced to boost the Z4's appeal among enthusiasts
The BMW Z4 roadster is now available with a manual gearbox in the UK, with the addition of the new Handschalter Package.
Available only on the range-topping Z4 M40i, the optional package adds a six-speed manual gearbox, a bespoke chassis set-up and unique colour combinations for a total price of £60,675.
BMW said certain components of the manual "incorporate M-specific components", including the shift lever's guide and connection to the transmission itself.
These are likely shared with the BMW M2 coupé, previously the only M car to be offered with a clutch pedal in the UK.
Meanwhile, reconfigured springs and dampers at the front and rear and adjusted steering mapping are said to give sharper handling "that will be appreciated by driving purists".
The car also gets 19in alloys at the front and 20in rims at the rear, while its differential and traction control system have been tweaked in a bid to improve roadholding under high power loads.
That performance comes from BMW's B58 turbocharged 3.0-litre straight six, which produces 335bhp and 369lb ft of torque.
The manual Z4 promises a 0-62mph time of 4.6sec – 0.1sec slower than the automatic car.
The package also adds its own colour scheme, including matt green paint, black trim pieces on the door mirrors and front bumpers and a brown leather interior with black trim pieces.
This is the first time BMW has put a clutch pedal in the UK-spec Z4 since it was launched here in 2019. It's indended to give the roadster a unique selling point over rivals such as the Audi TT and Jaguar F-Type, which are available with only an automatic gearbox.
The previous-generation Z4 could be equipped with a manual but not in top-spec 35i guise, which the M40i replaced.
The new 'box could also boost dwindling sales of the Z4. According to market analyst Jato Dynamics, the Z4 has sold 5448 times in Europe so far this year - 260 fewer than the TT and 222 fewer than the Porsche 718 Boxster.
The Z4 follows in the footsteps of its sister car, the Toyota GR Supra coupé, which gained the option of a six-speed manual in 2022. However, it does not use the same architecture as the Toyota's gearbox.
Production of the manual Z4 will begin in March, with deliveries scheduled for the spring.