Last summer we were eying up our first decent spy shots of the new BMW 2-series, and now, the most powerful version has been caught on camera. Yep, the M2 is returning for a second generation, retaining the turbo inline-six, rear-wheel drive setup that made the first one so appealing.
A test mule has been spotted undergoing cold weather testing on a frozen lake in Sweden, with plenty of details giving it away as the daddy of the 2er range. The telltale signs include blistered wheel arches, bigger brakes, and a beefy quad-exit exhaust.
Breathing out of those cans will, we think, be a detuned version of the ‘S58’ engine used in the X3 M, X4 M, M3 and M4 models. As a reminder, the current car makes 404bhp from its S55 twin-turbo six in Competition form, with the special CS version putting out 444.
The camouflage is still pretty heavy at this point, so it’s hard to definitively tell what’s going on at the front. We know from leaked photos that the standard 2-series will have some reasonably modest kidney grilles, but don’t discount the prospect of BMW sticking giant ones on the M2. Just look at the 3-series - it has a relatively normal face, but that didn’t stop BMW from giving the M3 the same tall grilles as the M4. Plus, there are practical benefits to the controversial styling, since the arrangement allows for easy packaging of an additional cooling unit.
In any case, we’ll have plenty of time to get used to the big-faced look via the M3 and M4, as the M2 is some way off. The new 2-series won’t be revealed until later this year, pointing to a 2022 debut for M Division’s version.