Now that the BMW M3 looks like a radioactive beaver and weighs as much as an E53 X5, fans might want to get into a different, smaller M car moving forward, something like the upcoming next-gen BMW M2.

The current BMW M2 is the best driving car the Bavarians build, especially in CS-spec. So the idea that BMW is going to make a new one, keep it rear-wheel drive, keep a normal sized grille and build it on a more capable platform is an encouraging one. Which is why these new spy photos are so exciting. (We don’t own them but you can see them here)

In these new photos, you can see that this new BMW M2 looks quite a bit different from the current car. It’s lower, longer and leaner looking than the sort of chunky, brutish bulldog that the current M2 is. It still gets swollen wheel arches but the overall design is smoother and a bit more mature. That will make some fans happy and upset others, as the butch, aggressive looks of the current car make a lot of fans happy but also make many wish it was more reserved.

While we can’t see the front end of the car through the camo, it does seem as if it gets pretty normal looking grilles. They seem big but not obnoxiously so, as they are on the M3. We’ve seen some leaked photos of the next-gen 2 Series and those grilles seem normal but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything. The current G20 3 Series has normal grilles but the M3 has been injected with the same growth hormones as its evenly-numbered sibling.

There’s no word on power or engine options for the next-gen BMW M2 but we can imagine that it will have some version of the M3/M4’s S58 engine. So expect anywhere between 450-500 horsepower for the standard car. Considering that the current M2 CS is an animal with 444 horsepower, just imagine closer to 500 horsepower. We can’t wait to see more.