… The changes provide the new, G87-generation M2 with much closer engineering ties to other M models than todays M2 has. M division insiders say this will enable the new M2 to offer a further step up in performance while helping it to retain a reputation for dynamic excellence through the sharing of key components.
An internal source told Autocar: Its more powerful, with greater torque, but sharper, too. Its still puristic, a drivers car, but with a broader spread of characteristics, a greater divide between comfort and sport, than what weve seen up to now.
… Details remain under wraps more than a year before its planned introduction but standard M2 models are expected to receive up to 410bhp, with the successor to todays M2 Competition set to offer up to 430bhp, just 50bhp short of the standard M3 and M4. The rise in power is claimed to be accompanied by a moderate lift in torque. Again, nothing is official but BMW M sources have revealed to Autocar that the new M2 could have as much as 428lb ft 22lb ft more than the existing M2 Competition and M2 CS.
…Distinguishing elements include a new-look front end with a lower and wider kidney grille than that seen on todays M2 Competition. Set within a deep front bumper, it goes without traditional fixed vertical louvres, adopting electronically operated active elements that open and close to suit the cooling and heating demands of the new engine.
… The bonnet adopts a prominent power dome and the wheel arches have been enlarged to accommodate wheels of up to 20in. A more pronounced shoulder line runs back to form wider haunches below the rear side windows. The windscreen and rear window are also more heavily raked than on the first-generation M2, giving it an altogether sleeker appearance.
In keeping with more recent M models, the tail-lights have a heavily structured design with OLED graphics while the boot slopes down towards the rear and receives a larger lip spoiler than todays model for added downforce. A wider diffuser is also integrated into the bottom of the rear bumper.
An optional carbonfibre package will allow prospective customers to specify the new car with various carbonfibre elements, including the roof and door mirrors, although the M2 Competition is set to get a carbonfibre roof as standard.
The new coupé has grown in size, albeit only moderately over todays 4468mm-long, 1984mm-wide and 1410mm-tall M2 Competition. Along with the increase in dimensions, the wheelbase has been extended by 51mm, at 2744mm, and the tracks have been widened at the front and rear. Crucially, the new M2 will match the 50:50 weight distribution of the less powerful M240i.
Autocar has been told the CLAR platform adopted by the new 2 Series provides a 40% increase in body rigidity compared with the structure used by the old model. The new M2 will add further rigidity with its own unique front suspension dome brace strut and a new brace integrated within the rear suspension.
Underpinning the new M2 is a heavily reworked MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension. Among the benefits of the new set-up cited by BMW M engineers is its ability to support increased front camber. It will be available with the choice of either lift-related or variable dampers.