The new BMW M2 is the latest compact sports coupe in a long line of legendary road and racing BMWs, such as the 2002 Turbo, E30 M3 and 1M Coupé. Cast in a similar mold, it brings the concept right up to date with the latest in motor sport derived technology. The result is a powerful performer that delivers genuine driver satisfaction on the road, and extreme capability on the racing circuit.
Powered by a new, specifically developed, 3.0-litre straight-six engine with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology, the latest product from BMW M GmbH produces a formidable 370hp, enabling an electronically-limited top speed of 155mph. When equipped with the optional seven-speed M DCT gearbox, the M2 can sprint from rest to 62mph in just 4.3 seconds.
The BMW M engineers have worked to reduce weight wherever possible, improve rigidity and hone the M2’s responses via sophisticated chassis technology and electronics to deliver a truly rewarding drive.
The six-cylinder engine of the new BMW M2 is entirely in keeping with the finest BMW M tradition. It offers unbeatable driving fun on a racing circuit, yet remains completely civilized in everyday use. With an appetite for revs not normally associated with a turbocharged engine, it features an exceptionally linear power delivery and strong torque across a broad rev range, all delivered with a distinctive engine sound. Rapid responses and excellent efficiency are amongst the benefits of BMW’s innovative M TwinPower Turbo technology.
The new 3.0-litre engine possesses an output of 370hp at 6,500rpm and will rev to 7,000rpm, while peak torque of 465Nm is on tap between 1,400 and 5,560rpm. An overboost function raises this figure by 35Nm to 500 Nm between 1,450 and 4,750rpm. With M DCT fitted and Launch Control activated, the new BMW M2 completes the sprint from rest to 62mph in just 4.3 seconds (4.5 sec with the six-speed manual gearbox).
BMW’s advanced M TwinPower Turbo technology on the M2 comprises of a TwinScroll turbocharger, High Precision Injection, variable camshaft timing (Double-VANOS) and VALVETRONIC variable valve control. The M2’s turbocharger has been integrated into the exhaust manifold, reducing the warm-up phase after a cold start and thereby helping to cut internal friction and significantly reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. Components including the pistons were sourced from the BMW M3/M4 engine, as are the crankshaft main bearing shells. In order to ensure oil reaches all engine components at all times under the kind of extreme conditions encountered on a race track, the engine benefits from a modified lubrication system; an additional oil cooler for the transmission oil (on M DCT cars) and a further water cooler for the engine keep temperatures stable.
With its four tailpipes, the M2 is instantly recognizable as a BMW M model and the exhaust’s minimal exhaust back-pressure ensures efficient performance. Added to which, the electrically controlled flap delivers the distinctive BMW M engine soundtrack across the entire rev range.
The new BMW M2 comes as standard with a six-speed manual gearbox, featuring dry-sump lubrication and an engagement speed control function that blips the throttle on downshifts and lowers the engine’s revs on upshifts.
Another option is the latest generation of the seven-speed M DCT. With this system the driver can change gear either in automated mode or manually using the M gearshift lever. The Drivelogic function tuned to the M DCT offers a choice of six driving programs (three in automatic mode and three in manual mode). The COMFORT, SPORT and SPORT+ settings can be activated using the Driving Experience Control switch.
M DCT with Drivelogic offers further specific M functions. For example, Stability Clutch Control (SCC) disengages the clutches when necessary to prevent oversteer and to stabilise the vehicle. The “creep on demand” function allows the driver to prompt the creep effect familiar from conventional automatic transmissions by nudging the accelerator while at a standstill – to maneuver out of tight parking spaces, for example. Another integrated feature is the Smokey Burnout function, which allows the driver to indulge in a degree of wheelspin while the car is moving at low speeds.
The high-performance brakes of the new BMW M2 are also a product of motor sport and can be quickly identified by their brake callipers (front axle: four-piston fixed callipers, rear axle: two-piston fixed callipers). In these M compound brakes, fitted as standard on the new BMW M2, the heavily loaded, perforated and inner-vented brake disc ring is made from grey-cast iron (front axle: 380mm in diameter, rear axle: 370mm in diameter), while the brake disc hub is manufactured from aluminum, saving weight.
Viewed from the side, the compact dimensions and hallmark BMW proportions with classic BMW Hofmeister kink give the M2 an unmistakable profile. Sculptural wing extensions at the front and rear axle (front: 55mm, rear: 80mm) are not only a stylistic statement, but also necessary to accommodate the wider track and wheels.
The new BMW M2 sees BMW M GmbH building on the success of the BMW 1 Series M Coupé. It continues the tradition of the legendary original BMW M3. Looking further back, the M2 can also be seen as a close descendant of a car from 40 years ago: the BMW 2002 turbo, which was the first mass-produced turbocharged car offered for sale in Germany. With 170hp and a zero to 62mph time of 8.9 seconds, the performance may have been some way off the new M2, but the spirit of driver enjoyment is the same.