Its distinctive profile also manifests itself in the expressive exterior design with athletic proportions, while the enhanced control/operating concept for customising vehicle set-up enables fine tuning and calibration of key functions both road and track.
Available with a 6-speed manual alongside an 8-speed M Steptronic transmission, the M2 is powered by a BMW M 3.0-litre straight-six engine with M TwinPower turbo technology developing 338kW of power and 550Nm of torque.
The eight-speed automatic’s rapid-fire gear shifts, direct connection to the engine and ability to execute multiple downshifts to the lowest available gear form the ideal basis for beguiling, instantaneous acceleration.
The M Steptronic unit is operated via a console-mounted selector lever, which sports the latest M design, as well as shift paddles on the steering wheel. The Drivelogic function offers a choice of three shift settings.
The six-speed manual gearbox lends itself to a vigorous driving style thanks to Gear Shift Assistant, which uses speed control to ensure slip-free operation when downshifting under braking, into corners. Gear Shift Assistant can also be deactivated in the M Setup menu.
The pulsating build-up of power with either option is accompanied by an emotionally rich soundtrack generated by the M-specific exhaust system with electrically controlled flaps. Oil supply and cooling systems are designed to handle extreme dynamic driving situations too.
The new BMW M2 completes the sprint to 100km/h from rest in 4.1 seconds with the auto, and 4.3 seconds in the manual. It is capable of powering to 200km/h in 13.5 seconds (automatic) or 14.3 seconds (manual).
The limited top speed of the new BMW M2 can be raised from 250km/h to 285km/h by specifying the optional M Carbon Experience package, which adds M Carbon bucket seats, and reduces the overall weight by 10.8kg.
Regardless of the transmission choice, the new BMW M2’s traditional form of dynamic performance is also embodied by its rear-wheel-drive setup.
The linear build-up of lateral acceleration forces that are characteristic of M models helps the driver to guide the car through corners with utmost confidence while also giving them the ability to execute controlled drifts.
The standard M Traction Control function is designed to allow the driver to carefully probe the vehicle’s performance limits by setting individual intervention thresholds for wheel slip limitation, with a choice of 10 stages.
Also fitted as standard, the Active M Differential seamlessly generates a locking effect of up to 100 per cent whenever required. This optimises traction on road surfaces, offering different levels of adhesion for the left- and right-hand rear wheel.
The standard equipment roster for the new BMW M2 is extensive. It includes adaptive M suspension with electronically controlled dampers, M Servotronic steering with variable ratio, and dynamic stability control, with M Dynamic mode.
A powerful M Compound brake system that comprises 380mm discs with six-piston fixed-callipers at the front and 370mm diameter discs with single-piston floating-callipers at the rear delivers exceptional stopping power.
On the outside, clearly designed surfaces, prominently flared side skirts and muscular wheel arches set the tone for the side view. The rear end of the new BMW M2 also has a compact, commanding feel and adds individual touches.
These include a boot lid spoiler, prominent rear diffuser insert and two pairs of 100mm diameter exhaust tailpipes. Five exterior paint finishes are available for the BMW M2, including the new Zandvoort Blue and Toronto Red metallic.
The M Carbon roof will be offered for the first time on a series production M2 and will feature as standard equipment on Australian specification vehicles. It comes with 19-inch M light-alloys at the front and 20-inch items at the rear, available in black or bicolour.
Inside, the new BMW M2 boasts a driver-centric cockpit design integrating M-specific readouts, controls and setup options, as well as the high-definition BMW Curved Display that has already made its mark on other new BMW models.
Driving-related information including shift lights appears in a new graphical layout on the 12.3-inch information display. M-specific widgets for vehicle setup and tyre condition are just two of the items that can be called up in the 14.9-inch control display.
The BMW head-up display, which is fitted as standard on Australian models, also features M-specific readouts and specific graphics. Both the curved display and the intelligent personal assistant form part of the latest-generation BMW iDrive.
Based on BMW OS 8, the system has been specifically configured for intuitive interaction between driver and vehicle using touch control and natural language. The new iDrive system enables full personalisation with BMW ID and My BMW App too.
Smartphone integration for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is also included, as well as a 5G antenna system for optimised connectivity. The driver and front passenger are welcomed with M Sport seats with integrated head restraints in ‘Vernasca’ leather.
M Carbon bucket seats, which are available as part of the M Carbon Experience package, use carbon fibre-reinforced plastic (CFRP) in the structural elements of the seat cushion and backrest and feature cut-outs in the side bolsters and below the head restraints.
As a finishing touch, the M Carbon seats are trimmed in ‘Merino’ leather with exclusive highlights – a special inclusion for the M Carbon Experience offering.
A premium harman/kardon audio system is standard. It’s joined by three-zone automatic climate control, BMW Live Cockpit Plus, and ambient lighting. The extensive safety suite includes front collision warning and speed limit display with no-overtaking indicator.
To own one, you’ll need to spend $119,900 plus on-roads. Further information is available from your local BMW dealership. If you’re keen on one, and need finance, talk to CreditOne.