It’s already been reported that BMW CEO Frank van Meel is on his way out of the M Division. He hasn’t been fired, nor is he leaving BMW. Instead, he’s moving to become in charge of total vehicle development for BMW. Replacing him is a man named Markus Flasch, who previously was the chief engineer for the BMW 8 Series. So what sort of changes, if there will be any, might we see in BMW M and BMW as a whole after these positional moves?
Well, whatever sort of changes we might see, we won’t see them for awhile. Frank van Meel is the man behind many of the upcoming BMW M cars, including the new BMW X3 M and X4 M, as well as the upcoming BMW M3. However, Flasch will be responsible for all of the cars coming after van Meel’s are on the road. Though, once that happens, we might see a bit of a change in the M brand.
Frank van Meel did a great job heading up BMW M but his time there won’t be remembered without controversy. Coming from Audi Sport (then Audi Quattro GmbH), van Meel brought with him knowledge in all-wheel drive performance, thus the F90 BMW M5 being all-wheel drive and automatic. The decision to go with a torque converter automatic was an interesting one and one that brought a ton of criticism. Although, I think we can safely say that it all worked out for the better, as this new M5 is a monster of a car.
What might we see from Flasch, though? Well, he was the man responsible for the 8 Series and, from what we’ve heard, that’s a pretty damn good car to drive. It’s also considered to be one of the better driver’s cars BMW has made in a long time. So can we expect more of that from future Flasch-helmed M cars? We hope so.