Z4 receives Viper V10 in mother of all engine swaps
Sure, there's plenty of engine swaps around these days, but we didn't think you could even fit a V10 in the engine bay of a Z4 coupe - and who says Germans don't have a sense of humour.
Yep, that's right, someone fitted a first generation Z4 (E85) with the 8.3 litre V10 from a Dodge Viper. A coupe model to be precise, which was probably a wise decision as the little Z4 could probably use every bit of rigidity it can get.
The engine is, unsurprisingly, a tight fit. The largest engine BMW ever put in the E85 Z4 was a 3.2 litre straight six after all. However, the relatively compact configuration of the OHV Viper V10 means the new engine does just about fit.
Presumably, it's this compactness which is why the Viper engine was chosen over anything else. An OHC configuration of a larger capacity, like all European engines currently in production, would likely not have squeezed into the Z4's engine bay.
The Dodge engine appears to have been lifted from a phase 1 second generation Viper, with even the Dodge airbox making it under the Z4's bonnet.
The result of the swap? Well, displacement is up by at least 5.1 litres (depending on what the donor Z4 originally had fitted). This gives the Dodge-BMW 540bhp and 550 ft/lb of torque, which could well spell the end of the rear tyres.
What's more, the Viper's V10 is well known to be an easily tuneable motor and the current owner reckons that with supercharging, the engine could easily produce 700bhp.
However, being a German build, the rest of the car has been upgraded to reflect the massive hike in power - a cheap hot-rod this is not. The car borrows Brembo brakes from an Audi R8, a custom driveshaft and bespoke rollcage.
Not to mention the entire interior has been stripped, as if the car wasn't light enough for the engine already!
The owner claims that the weight distribution of the car was considered throughout the build and that with two passengers on board the ratio is 51:49. With such little weight and such a short wheelbase however, we suspect keeping the car in a straight line might be the main problem.
The final cherry on the cake? The car's for sale as well, in Germany.