Come the Frankfurt motor
show in September, BMW’s go-fast M division will almost certainly have confirmed a production date for the new M2 coupe.
Until then, it doesn’t exist – officially that is. True to form, BMW New Zealand says it doesn’t know anything about it.
But here it is, the lightly camouflaged, near-production model pictured by a Automedia spy agency lensman near the Nurburgring circuit in Germany where it is undergoing winter trials on its 19-inch alloys.
The rear-drive M2 has been blessed with the spirit and appeal of four generations of the two-door M3 and will sit in the BMW line-up between the M235i and fifth-generation, four-door M3. It will replace the limited-edition 1M coupe, which sold in New Zealand for around $110,000.
But the M2 coupe, unlike the 1M coupe, won’t be a low volume model. It will serve as BMW’s introductory M and the variants will include a convertible and the option of all-wheel-drive for some snowy markets, using the company’s xDrive system.
It will also be powered not by the boosted six-cylinder engine used in the M3 and M4 but a new high-performance unit, a turbocharged, 3.0-litre straight-six tuned to generate around 280kW. That’s 30kW more than the 1M coupe but 40kW less than the M3/M4.
Just as it did with the M3/M4, BMW will use lighter weight composite materials to ensure the kerbweight of the M2 is lighter than 1530kg, or the weight of the M235i.
It is aiming at a 0-100km/h sprint time of 4.5 seconds, slightly slower than the M3/M4 but about half-a-second quicker than the 1M coupe.
Buyers will get the choice of a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox with steering wheel-mounted paddles. Both units get stop/start.
Standard is brake energy recuperation with a thermal energy recovery function and an electronically controlled limited-slip differential using a torque vectoring system for improved traction.