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      05-26-2019, 06:05 PM   #1
sanfordrich
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Tires and Z4 M40i when it's cold

I am considering ordering a 2020 BMW Z4 m40i. It appears to me I can only order this car with performance non run flat tires. I think ďperformanceĒ means summer only tires. I live in the mountains of Colorado where it can get around freezing for most of the months of the year. I donít know a lot about tires except I am pretty sure one is not supposed to use summer only tires when temperatures get around freezing or below. I donít plan to use this car in the dead of winter; however, I am concerned about being able to drive it when temperatures are freezing or less. Does anyone know if this car can be ordered with all season tires? Would one want to drive this car with all season tires? I test drove it the other day and loved the driving experience and design. Obviously, I donít want to purchase a car I canít drive because it is too cold. I canít believe BMW would sell a car one canít drive when itís too cold because of the tires, but that seems to be the case. The only tires available at Tire Rack were performance tires and I assume that means summer only. What about this do I not understand?
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      05-26-2019, 06:58 PM   #2
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You will need to get separate winter tires for this car. But, given its ground clearance and rwd setup it is ill equipped to handle snow or ice. Below freezing temps are okay in the dry on Michelin Pilots but not by much. Really hard freezing temps and they will be hockey pucks.
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      05-26-2019, 06:58 PM   #3
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In Colorado I would have another vehicle for inclement weather.
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      05-26-2019, 10:04 PM   #4
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There are plenty of all season tires available on Tire Rack in Z4 M40i sizes including ExtremeContact DWS 06 which is known to be very good in winter conditions for a non-winter tire.
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      05-26-2019, 10:30 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alex2364 View Post
There are plenty of all season tires available on Tire Rack in Z4 M40i sizes including ExtremeContact DWS 06 which is known to be very good in winter conditions for a non-winter tire.
Love the DWS 06 tires. Have used those on a recent car. I still would not be excited about a Z4 in Colorado in the winter with those.
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      05-26-2019, 11:00 PM   #6
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I went through this process and decided on the Pirelli PZero All Season Plus. The Tire Rack said it's the best high perf all season, with the Michelin a close second (it lost points for being a little harsh). The DWS, which I had on my M3, is quite soft in comparison - maybe a good thing depending on your preferences.
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      05-26-2019, 11:31 PM   #7
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Just to be clear, this would be a second car that would not be used in the winter months (except to "exercise" it). My concern is that where we live in Colorado (9200 feet in the mountains), I could be out and about and the weather could change quickly. Furthermore, the night temperatures could easily dip below freezing. Summer only performance rated tires would probably be a problem even outside of the winter months. However, when I search for compatible tires at Tirerack based on the vehicle, it only returns high performance, summer only tires. If I understand some of the responses, there are all season tires out there that would work. I will also work with my dealer and / or a live person at Tire Rack to see what they recommend. I don't understand why BMW doesn't offer a high performance all season tire when it is special ordered. If I go through with purchasing the M40i, the first thing I will do is swap out the Summer Performance tires for an all season tire. It's discouraging having to purchase a car with tires I can't use safely.

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      05-26-2019, 11:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanfordrich View Post
Just to be clear, this would be a second car that would not be used in the winter months (except to "exercise" it). My concern is that where we live in Colorado (9200 feet in the mountains), I could be out and about and the weather could change quickly. Furthermore, the night temperatures could easily dip below freezing. Summer only performance rated tires would probably be a problem even outside of the winter months. However, when I search for compatible tires at Tirerack based on the vehicle, it only returns high performance, summer only tires. If I understand some of the responses, there are all season tires out there that would work. I will work with my dealer to see what they recommend. Why doesn't BMW offer a high performance all season tire when it is special ordered?
Just get a set of all seasons or a separate winter set and you'll be fine. Given the price of the car another winter set or swap for all season will not break the bank and give you peace of mind.
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      10-08-2019, 12:01 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gblansten View Post
You will need to get separate winter tires for this car. But, given its ground clearance and rwd setup it is ill equipped to handle snow or ice.
Malarkey. I drove Z4's year-round in New Hampshire for years and my M40i should be delivered in December. They do fine as long as the roads are plowed, which is basically always here. When the state plow leaves a berm at the end of the driveway I either have to get out and dig or steal my wife's X3, but that's it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gblansten View Post
Below freezing temps are okay in the dry on Michelin Pilots but not by much. Really hard freezing temps and they will be hockey pucks.
I don't even really like the Pilot Sport II's on my M4 on cold roads, let alone freezing. The hockey puck analogy is apt. Get really good winter tires, though, and you're good to go.
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      10-08-2019, 10:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanfordrich View Post
I don't understand why BMW doesn't offer a high performance all season tire when it is special ordered. If I go through with purchasing the M40i, the first thing I will do is swap out the Summer Performance tires for an all season tire. It's discouraging having to purchase a car with tires I can't use safely.
The reason is because your situation is very rare; the vast majority of people buying an expensive, powerful, RWD, convertible have no intention of driving it in inclement weather. The solution, as the others have mentioned, is to purchase a set of winter or all season tires. I don't imagine it will be hard to sell a set of brand new stock tires but I would try to work a deal with your dealer.

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      10-08-2019, 12:22 PM   #11
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When I lived in Colorado, I just purchased as second set of wheels and tires that got me through much of the year. Continental DWS06 for the win
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      10-08-2019, 06:11 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanfordrich View Post
I don't understand why BMW doesn't offer a high performance all season tire when it is special ordered.
It's because no such thing exists! All-season means compromises for both warm- and cold-weather performance. On a sport sedan, that's fine. On a nearly-M roadster, it's not. As you'd intuited, "performance" definitely implies summer, or at least "not all-season".

The solution, as mentioned by others, is a second set of wheels with winter tires. Winter tires should typically be skinnier and higher-profile than summer tires, anyway, so it's much better to get smaller wheels for the winter tires than to try to find something appropriate for the summer wheels. It takes very little time to swap them when it's time. I know that's additional cost, but to me it's an anticipated expense of driving a performance car in New England.

My cars have summer tires for 6 months and winter tires for 6. My summer tires didn't pass inspection this year due to tread wear. The service manager told my wife "looks like Mark's been having fun!"

That means that the Michelin Pilot II's on my M4 when it was delivered in December of 2016 then immediately removed until warmer weather have lasted no more than half of the 18,000 miles on the car* nearly 3 years later and for only about 18 months of use. Performance tires are not durable, because that's not the goal any more than how they do in slush. Performance tires are made to very specific goals that have little to do with any considerations besides performance.

* Yes, it's my year-round daily driver. I have a 6-mile commute 4 days a week, so don't rack up a lot of miles.
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      10-08-2019, 07:49 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mstevens View Post
Malarkey. I drove Z4's year-round in New Hampshire for years and my M40i should be delivered in December. They do fine as long as the roads are plowed, which is basically always here. When the state plow leaves a berm at the end of the driveway I either have to get out and dig or steal my wife's X3, but that's it.



I don't even really like the Pilot Sport II's on my M4 on cold roads, let alone freezing. The hockey puck analogy is apt. Get really good winter tires, though, and you're good to go.
Good to know.
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      10-14-2019, 01:02 PM   #14
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So I haven't had a chance to look yet, but my Z4 M40i just entered production and will be delivered after I usually switch to the winter wheels on Halloween.

On my E85 I really loved Nokian Nokian Hakkapeliittas, but they didn't import the size needed for the E89's (or the M4, for that matter). If you can source them in the right size, they're an excellent performance winter tire.

I was shocked at how much I like the Continentals that came in a winter wheel and tire package from BMW (since I simply could not find any tires that would work any other way). I'm crossing my fingers that they may work for the G29.
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      10-14-2019, 01:25 PM   #15
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This is Tire Rack's recommendation for a winter tire for the Z4 M40i

https://www.tirerack.com/tires/TireS...SortCode=57751

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      10-17-2019, 11:18 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by mstevens View Post
It's because no such thing exists! All-season means compromises for both warm- and cold-weather performance. On a sport sedan, that's fine. On a nearly-M roadster, it's not. As you'd intuited, "performance" definitely implies summer, or at least "not all-season".

The solution, as mentioned by others, is a second set of wheels with winter tires. Winter tires should typically be skinnier and higher-profile than summer tires, anyway, so it's much better to get smaller wheels for the winter tires than to try to find something appropriate for the summer wheels. It takes very little time to swap them when it's time. I know that's additional cost, but to me it's an anticipated expense of driving a performance car in New England.

My cars have summer tires for 6 months and winter tires for 6. My summer tires didn't pass inspection this year due to tread wear. The service manager told my wife "looks like Mark's been having fun!"

That means that the Michelin Pilot II's on my M4 when it was delivered in December of 2016 then immediately removed until warmer weather have lasted no more than half of the 18,000 miles on the car* nearly 3 years later and for only about 18 months of use. Performance tires are not durable, because that's not the goal any more than how they do in slush. Performance tires are made to very specific goals that have little to do with any considerations besides performance.

* Yes, it's my year-round daily driver. I have a 6-mile commute 4 days a week, so don't rack up a lot of miles.
Thanks for the feedback. By the way, my Z4 M40i is Misano Blue and I think it's a really nice color on this car. I also love driving it, but it's a fair weather car for me and will be only taken out to "exercise" it in the winter on dry, rural roads for very short drives. Therefore, I've decided to just keep the summer tires on it. I think your plan makes sense for those who have to deal with winter conditions.
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      10-22-2019, 02:17 PM   #17
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One thing to bear in mind here, is the difference in the makeup of summer versus winter tires. Of course, the tread patterns are very different to account for summer driving in dry or wet conditions - versus winter driving in snow or on very slippery ice.

But its also important to remember that the rubber itself can be very different. The rubber in summer tires can get stiff and not grip very well at all, even on a completely clear and dry road, as the temperature gets close to freezing. Its one of the reasons why many BMWs have a low temperature alarm when the temperature falls to +3 degrees C / 37F. The rubber in winter tires is formulated so they don't stiffen up in the cold and still give good traction at low temperatures and on slippery roads. This also means that if you drive with winter tires in warm spring weather, they will wear out fairly quickly.

After years of driving in Canada, my vote is to garage your car over the winter. This will avoid all this trouble and the risk of damage from de-icing materials like road salt (if used in your area and which will EAT your car ALIVE), or road gravel. In my experience, there isn't much that ages a car faster than driving it in winter. Lots of dandy advice over on the E85 forum about winter storage. I wash and wax my car, top her up with gas to avoid tank rusting, pump up the tires to 40 - 45 psi to avoid flat spots, put the car on a good battery tender, toss on a good BMW cover, and pray for spring! Do this and years from now, your Z4 will still look brand new. Folks who ask me how old my car is are shocked when I tell them its a 2006. The usual answer is "don't you mean 2016?" "Noooo - 2006!"

And congrats on the Misano Blue Z4 - great color choice!!!
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      11-03-2019, 03:10 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Huz-Z View Post
One thing to bear in mind here, is the difference in the makeup of summer versus winter tires. Of course, the tread patterns are very different to account for summer driving in dry or wet conditions - versus winter driving in snow or on very slippery ice.

But its also important to remember that the rubber itself can be very different. The rubber in summer tires can get stiff and not grip very well at all, even on a completely clear and dry road, as the temperature gets close to freezing. Its one of the reasons why many BMWs have a low temperature alarm when the temperature falls to +3 degrees C / 37F. The rubber in winter tires is formulated so they don't stiffen up in the cold and still give good traction at low temperatures and on slippery roads. This also means that if you drive with winter tires in warm spring weather, they will wear out fairly quickly.

After years of driving in Canada, my vote is to garage your car over the winter. This will avoid all this trouble and the risk of damage from de-icing materials like road salt (if used in your area and which will EAT your car ALIVE), or road gravel. In my experience, there isn't much that ages a car faster than driving it in winter. Lots of dandy advice over on the E85 forum about winter storage. I wash and wax my car, top her up with gas to avoid tank rusting, pump up the tires to 40 - 45 psi to avoid flat spots, put the car on a good battery tender, toss on a good BMW cover, and pray for spring! Do this and years from now, your Z4 will still look brand new. Folks who ask me how old my car is are shocked when I tell them its a 2006. The usual answer is "don't you mean 2016?" "Noooo - 2006!"

And congrats on the Misano Blue Z4 - great color choice!!!
Thanks for the tips. So you don't drive your vehicle at all during the winter storage months. I've always been told it was better to drive it a little than to let it sit for extended periods. My car will be in a garage that is generally above freezing and I will take it out on a very clear, dry day for a few miles every couple of weeks (assuming I'm at home). I also keep it on a smart trickle charger. I did that with my Z3 and the battery lasted a very long time. Your points about inflating the tires to avoid the flat spots and filling the gas tank are good ideas that I will follow.
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      11-04-2019, 09:13 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanfordrich View Post
Thanks for the tips. So you don't drive your vehicle at all during the winter storage months. I've always been told it was better to drive it a little than to let it sit for extended periods. My car will be in a garage that is generally above freezing and I will take it out on a very clear, dry day for a few miles every couple of weeks (assuming I'm at home). I also keep it on a smart trickle charger. I did that with my Z3 and the battery lasted a very long time. Your points about inflating the tires to avoid the flat spots and filling the gas tank are good ideas that I will follow.
Yeah, you're probably quite right that driving the car a little every now and then is good for it. I would do that here, except that we get so much wet heavy snow here, and the town is constantly applying road salt, that the streets are almost never clean and dry enough for me to dare to drive the car on them. But if that's not the case where you are, then go for it!
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      11-06-2019, 11:47 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanfordrich View Post
Thanks for the tips. So you don't drive your vehicle at all during the winter storage months. I've always been told it was better to drive it a little than to let it sit for extended periods. My car will be in a garage that is generally above freezing and I will take it out on a very clear, dry day for a few miles every couple of weeks (assuming I'm at home). I also keep it on a smart trickle charger. I did that with my Z3 and the battery lasted a very long time. Your points about inflating the tires to avoid the flat spots and filling the gas tank are good ideas that I will follow.
I store 4 vehicles all winter long and have done so for 10+ years; if you store them properly, there is no reason to fire it up during their 6 month hibernation. I clean them, put them on a maintenance charger and use ethanol free fuel or treat it with Stabil. Periodic running of the engines is actually bad for them unless you get it all the way up to temp for at least 15-20 minutes to burn off any condensation in the oil. Going for a drive is out of the question for me as the roads here are coverered in snow, ice and gravel all winter long. doing an oil change and filling the tires before putting them away are good ideas too though I seldom bother.

2 cents,
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      11-11-2019, 03:31 PM   #21
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BMW's are cars. They're not made out of sugar and don't dissolve if left out in the rain. They can handle snow, ice, gravel, and whatever just fine. They are, for the most part, designed in Bavaria and their design takes into account the existence of winter. A Z4 is no more susceptible to road salt than is a Ford F250. It has no more difficulty on low-traction surfaces than other rear-wheel drive cars with comparable tires. It does have obvious issues with ground clearance for things such as plow berms.

Z4's have been my year-round daily drivers for most of the past 15 years apart from the past 3 years during which I've driven an M4 Cabrio. I live in a mountainous region of NH where we nearly always have more cold and snow than Montreal. I need winter tires for 6 months of the year. I put them on by Halloween (and have been caught in snow earlier than then) and take them off after Tax Day (and have been stuck in my own driveway later than that). The only time I'll take my wife's X3 is if the state plow has left a berm higher than my front bodywork.

Our local high school has a large parking lot with no obstructions at all. I've taken each of my cars out there during late-night snows that are especially slick and nasty to throw them around. With all the traction and stability controls off, I usually end up immobile. With them on, it's nearly impossible to do donuts even on surfaces I wouldn't risk walking on. These cars are perfectly fine on winter roads.

I've always figured if I can't afford to drive a car whenever I please, to park it at Walmart without panic, to keep it maintained and serviced, and to feed it all the tires it devours, then I can't afford that car. I prefer that my cars at all times look and work like new, but I don't achieve that by wrapping them up and stuffing them in the barn.

I prefer driving small performance cars. The M4 certainly performs, but I don't need its (vestigial) back seat and even after nearly 3 years it still feels huge to me. I hate driving most other cars (though my wife's G01 M40i has been a surprising exception). Since I can afford to drive a Z4 and since it's a perfectly reasonable winter car under most circumstances, one has been and will be my daily driver.

If you enjoy storing your Z4 over the winter, don't deny yourself that pleasure. If, however, you got your car to drive, put some good winter tires on it and don't deny yourself the pleasure of driving it over the winter.
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      11-12-2019, 02:12 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mstevens View Post
BMW's are cars. They're not made out of sugar and don't dissolve if left out in the rain. They can handle snow, ice, gravel, and whatever just fine. They are, for the most part, designed in Bavaria and their design takes into account the existence of winter. A Z4 is no more susceptible to road salt than is a Ford F250. It has no more difficulty on low-traction surfaces than other rear-wheel drive cars with comparable tires. It does have obvious issues with ground clearance for things such as plow berms.

Z4's have been my year-round daily drivers for most of the past 15 years apart from the past 3 years during which I've driven an M4 Cabrio. I live in a mountainous region of NH where we nearly always have more cold and snow than Montreal. I need winter tires for 6 months of the year. I put them on by Halloween (and have been caught in snow earlier than then) and take them off after Tax Day (and have been stuck in my own driveway later than that). The only time I'll take my wife's X3 is if the state plow has left a berm higher than my front bodywork.

Our local high school has a large parking lot with no obstructions at all. I've taken each of my cars out there during late-night snows that are especially slick and nasty to throw them around. With all the traction and stability controls off, I usually end up immobile. With them on, it's nearly impossible to do donuts even on surfaces I wouldn't risk walking on. These cars are perfectly fine on winter roads.

I've always figured if I can't afford to drive a car whenever I please, to park it at Walmart without panic, to keep it maintained and serviced, and to feed it all the tires it devours, then I can't afford that car. I prefer that my cars at all times look and work like new, but I don't achieve that by wrapping them up and stuffing them in the barn.

I prefer driving small performance cars. The M4 certainly performs, but I don't need its (vestigial) back seat and even after nearly 3 years it still feels huge to me. I hate driving most other cars (though my wife's G01 M40i has been a surprising exception). Since I can afford to drive a Z4 and since it's a perfectly reasonable winter car under most circumstances, one has been and will be my daily driver.

If you enjoy storing your Z4 over the winter, don't deny yourself that pleasure. If, however, you got your car to drive, put some good winter tires on it and don't deny yourself the pleasure of driving it over the winter.
Do you really want to subject your prized Z4 to the same winter abuse as a Ford F250? I surely do not.

In theory, cold and snow by themselves or together absolutely will not hurt your car, and winter driving would be a blast in such a perfect world. If that describes your situation, then maybe its okay. But add frequent use of road salt to the equation, and the result is very different. In my part of Canada, they use A LOT of road salt in the winter, and take it from me, the stuff EATS cars alive. I will never subject my car to that. If you must drive your Z4 in winter in areas where road salt is frequently used, at least get the thing properly rust protected.

Reminds me of the time about 5 years ago when my buddy was having problems with his GMC pick up truck. Eventually, a GM factory rep flew up from the US to look at the issues. When the dealer put the truck up on the ramp for an underside inspection, the factory rep was amazed at the widespread general corrosion after only two years here. "Jesus, this is where cars are sent to die" he reportedly remarked while my buddy observed.

Its not just the body and chassis of the car that is affected. Its all the fittings, seals, boots, brake lines, calipers, bleed valves, tpms components and sensors, fuel lines, exhaust components, pitted and eaten rims - a myriad of bits and bobs of the car that are exposed to a highly corrosive environment for an extended period and deteriorate at an accelerated rate as a result. So in addition to the car looking like shit sooner, owing to all that lovely galvanic corrosion, general maintenance becomes much harder (nuts and bolts won't loosen or just snap off) and stuff is likely going to fail at a higher rate when the warranty is up. The life of the car may very well be limited. For example, back in 97, I had a nice Honda Accord EX. By 2007 or 2008, sightings of that vintage Honda here were practically unheard of - they had all worn out due to the local winter environment. But 4 years later, in 2011, while getting a cab to our hotel in Vegas, I was amazed to see one just like mine alongside our cab, looking basically brand new. Clearly salt isn't used much in Las Vegas. Well, at least not on the roads.

With respect to general maintenance issues, My Z4 is stored every winter and never has been winter driven - I just put mine away yesterday in fact. The techs at the local dealer here are accustomed to working on cars that are winter driven, like my X5, and the accompanying effort that comes with trying to loosen corroded bolts or brake parts. But when I bring in my 13 year old E85, they are in awe that a car of that age can be almost as clean on the underside and as easy to work on as if it came out of the showroom a few weeks ago.

But hey - anyway you slice it or dice it, its your car and your decision.
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Huz-Z


BMW Z4 3.0si Roadster. Montego Blue Metallic. Premium and Sport Package.

Last edited by Huz-Z; 11-12-2019 at 02:39 PM..
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