In Reply to: rear suspension posted by Paul Ebeyer on January 10, 2000 at 00:30:32:
This is just my view, but I believe we can trace BMW's decision to use the older E30 trailing arm rear suspension vs. the multi-link, as used on the E36, to two parameters: Cost Containment; and, Packaging.
My understanding is that the ///M Roadster has a rear suspension similiar to the E30 series cars rather than the E36 ///M coupes and sedans which is supposed to be superior.
True...For all Z3s, not just the ///M.
I heard there just wasn't enough space available at the rear of the ///M Roadster to accomodate the E36 rear suspension. Do I understand this correctly?
Not quite. Recall that the Z3's internal code = "E36/7". Why wouldn't there be enough real estate to accommodate it? The *problem* is that two of the links with the E36 rear suspension would consume alot of the forward trunk capacity.
european car is currently running a series on Suspension Basics that uses pictures and text of both to highlight the differences. Nice read, BTW.
Also, does the Z3 ///M Coupe (and/or 2.8) have the same rear suspension as the ///M Roadster and if not, what system does it have?
No, they all use the same.
The other prime motivation was cost. It seems clear that when they signed-off on the '96 1.9's setup, they were faced with a hard MSRP price point of $30K, which led them to using a system already amortized.
Once their engineers were locked into the platform's hard points, the subsequent *developments* appear interesting, if not amusing. To wit, or witless: