The convertible sportscar market has got a new entrant in the form of the new generation BMW Z4. While the Z nameplate is not new to India, this Z4 is new to the game and has been developed alongside the new generation Toyota Supra.
It's been launched in India in two variants, the S20i and the more upmarket M40i, that gets the M body kit. Priced in the range of Rs 68 lakhs to Rs 78 lakhs, it's a direct rival to the Mercedes C300 cabriolet and here is how the cars stack up against each other.
In terms of the exteriors, the Z4 is the more flamboyant model thanks to its curves and low slung lines. The C300, on the other hand, looks far more understated but only when you compare it to the Z4. On its own, the C300 is still a show-off car as it's a convertible and that's a rare commodity in the Indian car market.
Both cars are defined by the same design highlights — the family grille, design of the wheels, tail lamps and obviously, that folding hood that defines their style.
Interior and features
Given their pricing and position in the market, a lot of features are considered standard. Climate control, touchscreen infotainment system, leather upholstery and a roof mechanism that can raise the lower the fabric top in under 20 seconds.
In terms of dimensions, the C300 is significantly longer than the Z4 and offers more space inside. Consequently, this makes the second row of the Mercedes a much bigger space to be in.
Engine and gearbox
2.0-litre turbo petrol engines seem to be the norm for such vehicles and it's no different here. The BMW's four-cylinder powerplant produces 194bhp/320Nm while the Mercedes’ engine produces 255bhp and 370Nm. They are both rear wheel drive and make use of eight and nine-speed transmission respectively. They both get paddle shifters, 17-inch wheels and multiple driving modes.
On the face of things, both cars have a similar level of features and engine outputs. However, the C300 is longer, more powerful and spacious. But in the looks department, the Z4 wins hands down thanks it's low slung curvy appearance. What's more, you can add another 10 lakhs to the price of the Z4 S20i and buy the M40i thesis, a six-cylinder and with a much potent output of 335bhp/500Nm. The M in M40i means you also get the M spec body kit that has extra bits both on the inside and outside.