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Dave's 2004 BMW Z4 Roadster
Took long enough, but worth the wait.....
By Ruben Pina Jr.
Photography by Ruben Pina Jr.
December 2005
 
I usually send out a questionaire of a million questions so that I can get some good material to write an article with. Well, I sent it to Dave and he really did a good job answering the questions. So good that it would be impossible for me to write an article with all the information I want to put in there unless I make it like 20 paragraphs long. Every answer had so much in there that I wanted everyone to see that I decided this time instead of writing an article I would just publish the questionaire. So enjoy everyone!
 

When did you get your car? June 2004

Did you buy it with the intention of modding it? Yes. I've always tried to do whatever I could to individualize my cars. Typically I've done mainly aesthetic or audio mods to the cars to make them visually or audibly different, leaving the performance aspect stock.

What other cars have you had before it?
I've owned: 1982 Datsun B210, 1985 Honda Prelude 2.0si, 1990 Geo Tracker, 1993 Ford Probe and now this car, 2003 BMW Z4 3.0

Did those cars have any modifications? I've put stereo systems in every one of my cars with the exception of the Datsun, which I didn't own for very long. I did only mild stereo work to the Prelude. The most extreme part of the Prelude's stereo was probably the addition of tweeters inside the center A/C ducts. It restricted air flow a little, but it really created a nice front image for the stereo. The Tracker had the most extreme stereo mods to it. I took out the back seat and built a huge box with 2 12” Orion DVC XTR. I mounted tweeters inside the side pillars to help compete with the huge amount of bass that the Orions put out. I also built a lockable storage box out of MDF as well, which set in the back seat area in between the sub box and the front seats. The entire box was given a faux stone finish, which looked pretty cool (or at least it did back in the day…) The Probe I didn't really do much to – I only swapped out the head unit and put a 10” MTX sub in the back.

How did you find your car? Dealer

Who is your biggest critic of your car?
I guess I am.

Is there anything unique about the history of this car?
It was “allegedly” a show car for AC Schnitzer. I purchased the car with 2,000 miles on it, but it already had some AC Schnitzer additions on it and the price was great, so I couldn't pass it up. I have no idea if it truly was a Schnitzer demo car, that's simply what the salesman at the BMW dealer in Germany told me.

What is the objective of this car?
To maintain the intent of BMW's design, while improving on it to create an individualized car that won't be mistaken for someone else's car on the road.

What tuning style would you describe your car as? Umm, all show, no go? Not sure how to answer this one. As I don't really focus too much on improving performance, since I'm not a “racer” I'd say that it's a more visual style of tuning that I'm going for. Does that make sense?

Who helped you build this car?
My Russian friend Michael swapped out the OEM amber lighting to the blue lighting for me. My wife also purchased the CTD-Germany front lip and several of the other additions for me. Other than that either I did the work or paid a professional to do it for me. My wife is really supportive of my modding the car – she really loves the car as well, though she calls it my ‘mistress' since it steals me away from my wife. Truthfully I'd miss it if it got stolen or wrecked, but in the end it's just a car… It does always make me smile when I drive it though.

What makes your car special? I really think the AC Schnitzer stuff really sets it apart. Though the Streamline Engineering CAI and the blue interior lighting are a bit more unique in the Z4 world, since there are only like 4 people with the CAI and only 1 other Z4 that I know of with the blue lighting and that one belongs to a German that lives in Germany, so it's probably the only Z4 in the US that has blue lighting…

What is your favorite part/feature/function? This is a tough one. I guess I'd cheat and say all the Schnitzer stuff together. My favorite of that stuff though has gotta be the Schnitzer exhaust – it really adds a nice beefy exhaust note to the car, plus I think the chrome tips look sweet. I like the blue lighting a lot too, since the OEM amber really just annoyed me. It reminded me of old Alpine head units, which was the main reason I never liked them back in the day.

Who or what inspired the direction of modifications on this car? I always wanted a roadster. I can't say that I've always wanted a BMW because truthfully the only BMW owners I've ever had contact with were self-important jerks, so I really resisted buying a BMW because I didn't want to either: 1) be grouped in with those guys or worse 2) BECOME one of those guys. I'd like to think that my car doesn't make me special, rather I make my car special. Sounds pretty ghey, but there ya go… I did a lot of research when I bought my car – I looked at pretty much every roadster available (except the Miata – no thanks!) I looked at the: Lotus Elise, Honda S2000, Audi TT, 350Z convertible, Porsche Boxster and the Mercedes SLK 350. The Lotus was too small, the Audi was too crappy, the Boxster styling just didn't do it for me and the 350Z was too much for what you get. So, I had it narrowed down to the S2000, the Z4 and the SLK 350. They stopped selling the American spec S2000 in Germany and Mercedes didn't offer any breaks on the SLK, so the Z4 is what I got. Anyway, to answer the question, since the car already had some Schnitzer gear installed on it, I'd say that AC Schnitzer inspired the direction of the modifications on my car. They have very tasteful products, though they're WAY expensive, so I'm adding them a little bit at a time. I eventually plan to get their side skirts, rear apron and 2-piece rear wing.

What don't you like about this car? I LOVE everything about the car – I just hate driving it on the roads of San Antonio because of how low it is, so I guess the thing I don't like would be how low it is. I really like how it looks though, so I don't intend to change its stance just to drive it here – I just have to be careful where I go and which roads I take I guess.

What would you change if you could? Probably the color. I really wanted the merlot red. Not that I don't LOVE the silver because I think it looks really nice – it's just that every other car on the road is silver now… If I were to repaint it I'd probably pick an off-the-wall color like a deep purple or a lime green – I know, you really hope I don't decide to repaint it

On a scale of 1 to 10, where are you so far with this car? 6 – I intend to add the rest of the AC Schnitzer body kit, JL Audio sub/amp, iPod, coilovers, sway bars and new rims/tires. I'll probably never finish working on the car, though I plan on getting new rims/tires, the JL Audio sub/amp and iPod all installed this year. If I were to receive a large inheritance or something I would probably also add a supercharger and Brembos all the way around, but they're way too expensive to consider right now. It would run me about $12-13K just for the SC and brakes, so it's not likely…

What do your friends and family say about this car? Everyone really loves the car. It's all the cooler because you almost never see them around. The typical question I get is “What kind of car IS that?” One of the first days I had it, some guy ran up and asked if he could take his picture beside my car; weird, but kinda cool too… It's just funny seeing people's reaction to the car – little boys stare open-mouthed when I drive by, middle-aged stare longingly, old men just shake their heads. Everyone that rides in the car with me comments on how much attention the car gets, so I think that colors their perception of it and makes it seem that much cooler to them. I bought the car for me, so I don't really care what everyone else thinks, but it's nice that other people seem to appreciate what I'm doing with it as well.

What is your favorite place to drive this car?
The Autobahn in Germany.

What is your ideal day with this car? Partly cloudy day, mid 70s, no traffic, driving on a 2 lane, tree-covered road through the country filled with twisties and nice straight-aways to really get going on. Oh and the top would have to be down too…

Who gets to drive this car? I do (of course), my wife (on occasion) and from time-to-time an occasional valet, though I never trust them NOT to scrape the front lip…

If your car had a motto what would it be?
I think BMW said it best – “The ultimate driving machine” If not that, then I guess it would be “Hang up the phone and drive” since I'm sick of almost being run into by morons that are talking on the phone instead of paying attention to the road.

If you had to name your car, what would it be?
I dunno – Klaus, Otto, Dieter? It's German, so it should have a German name I guess. Of course cars are supposed to be female… I think I'd go with Otto, since it's a homonym for auto. I chose the tag “TiAgZ4” since it's a Titanium (Ti) Silver (Ag) Z4. It's kind the ‘chemical composition' for my dream car I guess… I guess it's the inner geek in me, but oh well…

What is your next project?
I think my next project is going to be adding on to the factory stereo. It's already got the premium 10 speaker stereo by Harmon Kardon and Carver, but I'd really like to add a JL Audio 10W6v2 sub in a nice plexiglass box in the trunk, driven by a JL Audio 500/1 amplifier. I also intend to install a 60GB video iPod in the center console. The tires are getting a little worn, so when they're ready to be swapped out I plan on getting new wheels, along with the new tires.

What is one word to describe your car? Umm, silver? I'm not sure – I get a lot of “awesome” and “cool” comments, but I'd prefer “clean” or “classic” I guess. I prefer a much cleaner look than what the ricers go for.

What was your first modification on the car? I swapped out all the rear brake lights and the side markers to clear lenses.

What was your first forum you joined to research your car? www.z4um.com

How did you start to get into the European car scene? Well, I was in Europe at the time, so that helped… It's funny because most of the Europeans seem to want to get American-style cars, while all the Americans there are grabbing whatever German cars they can. Being there really made me appreciate the euro cars. Of course they have more than their fair share of beater BMWs, though those are typically owned by military members that are stationed there.

How did you start to find out about modifications for your car? Truthfully when I bought the car there were very few options available. The ones that did exist were EXTREMELY expensive. The Z4 seems to be a very niche market kind of car, so with that you pay a premium for any modifications that are available. It seems like every single mod I want to do to the car is at least $2,000…

 

Click here for Forum Discussion
Owner info: TiAgZ4
Name: Dave Roseman
Occupation: Military, USAF

Vehicle Specs:
Year: 2003
Make: BMW
Color: Titanium Silver
Model: Z4
Engine: 3.0 Inline-6 cylinder

Engine Modifications: Streamline Engineering CAI and AC Schnitzer sport exhaust with chrome tips
Transmission Modifications: None
Suspension Modifications: AC Schnitzer strut brace
Brake Modifications: None
Wheels and Tires: 18” OEM BMW Style 107 (ellipsoid) wheels with BF Goodrich Potenza RFT
Exterior/Body Modifications: Front euro plate, CTD-Germany front lip, CTD-Germany chrome grill, BMW clear side markers, BMW clear brake lights, CTD-Germany stubby antenna and AC Schnitzer decal
Interior Modifications: AC Schnitzer emergency brake handle, AC Schnitzer pedal set, AC Schnitzer leather upholstery, AC Schnitzer floor mats, Bimmian “Xenon” interior lighting, swapped OEM amber lighting to blue, LeatherZ leather armrests, LeatherZ trunk tray, LeatherZ convertible top cover, BMW Universal Garage Door Opener rearview and Roadster Solutions clear acrylic windblocker
Mobile Electronics: Passport 8500 X50 (blue) w/remote display
Lighting Modifications: None

 
Well there were going to be more pictures but the batteries ran out on the camera we were using and we didn't have a back-up. So we will try to get more pics for you guys!