The BMW M2 has to be one of the most hotly anticipated BMWs, if not cars in general, to be debuting in 2016. Based on the much loved BMW 2 Series, the M2 could be the best M car since the E46 M3. At the moment, that title goes to the 1 Series M, as it’s the most E46 M3-like M car since. However, with some new information about the upcoming BMW M2, it may be able to overcome the 1 Series M and every other M car.
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The 1 Series M was such a good car and it almost seemed to have happened by accident. In the most rudimentary explanation possible, BMW created the 1M by basically taking a bunch of M car parts from the M3 and Z4M and slapped them on a 1 Series. What BMW ended up with was something that was far more than the sum of its parts, it ended up with something transcendent. BMW did something similar with the M2 and, after hearing from some of the M2’s engineers, it think we will end up with the same result.
Before you think the M2 is just a parts bin-makeover, let us reassure you that it isn’t. Though it does have more of a blue-collar feel than the M3 or M4. While the rest of the BMW M lineup seems to have been designed with no dollar amount in mind and by using the best materials and technology. The M2 seems like it was designed just to be fun and it’s more of a working man than the prestigious M3 or M4. If Mike Ditka were to name the M2, he’d call it the Grabowski. However, it’s so much more than just an M235i with some M4 bits.
Some of the subframe parts are taken from the M4, and so are the brakes. But, brakes are just standard steel M4 brakes, because engineering the carbon ceramics to fit and work would cost too much and wouldn’t pay off, considering the lighter weight of the M2 not needed carbon ceramics. Track pads will be available, which last longer during abuse, but they’re expensive squeak more. So there’s that feeling that the M2 doesn’t need no stinking fancy ceramics and will do just fine with the steels.
The M2 will also be getting the same transmission options and electronic differential as the M4, but the Drivelogic controller will been removed to make it simpler. The BMW M2 will also get bespoke springs and dampers that will be non-adjustable. The reasoning behind the fixed dampers is that when cars have adjustable dampers, their springs remain fixed, thus compromises at least two of the damper settings because they shocks won’t always be exactly tuned to the springs. So the M2 will be answering many enthusiast’s prayers, to just pick one suspension setting, make it perfect, and that’s it.
The steering, transmission and throttle settings will be adjustable, through the typical Comfort, Sport and Sport+ modes, though those modes will not be customizable, so one mode will change all three characteristics and keep it that way. This is to eliminate a lot of the fussiness of combining different settings, as the M2 is meant to be as simple as possible.
But it isn’t all blue-collar with the M2. Its engine, despite its humble M235i beginnings, will sport pistons from the M4 as well as cylinder liners and the M4’s oil sump and pump, to help with its high lateral force capabilities. It will also gain a new radiator with improved airflow to keep the engine cool after the added power and boost.
Now, you might think that all of those added M4 parts and structural bracing and steel fender flare might have added a ton of weight. But, in fact, the BMW M2 is only 30kg (66 lbs) heavier than the M235i. BMW has managed this by removing most of the sound deadening, so the M2 is going to be loud. In a good way.
According to these M2 engineers, it’s actually more fun to drive than the BMW M4. It’s smaller and a bit more tossable, though it isn’t as fast in a straight line. However, they do feel that the M2 would be quicker around a tight track, do to its lighter weight and more nimble handling. Though, the M2’s official Nurburgring time is 7:58 compared to the M4’s 7:52. Still, a sub-eight minute ‘Ring time is pretty damn impressive.
But pure speed isn’t what the M2 is about. It’s about being fun and nimble and that’s exactly what it does. It’s the BMW M car we’ve all been waiting for, the one that is more about how it feels than what numbers it puts down. The BMW “Grabowski” M2 might just be the best M car right now.