There has been a lot of chatter around regarding the M2 from BMW. This car is one that came on the scene as an expected top performer in the market of great driving vehicles, but some feel it’s not quite up to par with what was expected. While we can relive the glory days of the best driving machines on the market, making them more efficient and agile is a task that creates a completely different feeling in these cars than ever before. To put it simply, we can’t build cars today like we used to, but we can still build some great cars.
To start with the M2 offers us a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine that produces 365 horsepower and 369 lb.-ft. of torque. This is attached to either a six-speed manual or seven-speed dual clutch automatic transmission to give us the driving experience we want to enjoy. As for comparisons, this engine is the same as that in the M235i and M240i with the M235i making 320 horsepower and the M240i giving you 335 ponies from under the hood. This difference might seem minimal, but when you’re working with a small engine area an increase of thirty horsepower is significant.
What does this power output give you for the drive? You get to enjoy having a car that can reach sixty mph in only four seconds that costs you only $55,000. Think about the fact that this is in the same range in acceleration as the Porsche 911, but for a lot less money. Another huge benefit is the fact the maximum torque is achieved as early as 1,400 rpm and the M2 can redline at 7,000 which is higher than nearly any other car of this size on the road today.
The fact that you can shift your own gears with the six-speed manual makes a huge difference in this car. You will feel connected to it and enjoy the smooth and short throws that are part of the experience. This connection to the car and the road is often lost on the market today and is a refreshing element to have as the standard equipment. Of course if you want the best acceleration the dual clutch is the choice to make as this transmission delivers the ride you want and the quickness you’re looking for to be able to enjoy the ride.
Another beautiful element of the M2 is the fact its ready to hit the track. That’s not the case with the other 2-Series models. The suspension is extremely stiff and the brakes are massive to give you ride feel and control. Adding to the control element of the M2 is a dynamic steering system that is as engaged as you can find on some sports cars. Changing up from a typical BMW model that tries to be sport and luxury, the M2 is all sport and doesn’t add weight to accommodate luxury making it a car you can enjoy at a light 3,500 pounds of agility on the track.
Just because BMW didn’t go all out and add massive luxury to this car doesn’t mean it isn’t equipped with what you want to enjoy. This car offers Alcantara in the seats and door panels, contrasting stitching to give it a refined look, carbon fiber trim on the inside, a Harman/Kardon sound system, a navigation system, dual-zone automatic climate controls, heated seats, rain sensing wipers and only one package to improve the luxury feel. I didn’t say this car was uncivilized and stripped down, but it certainly doesn’t have your normal BMW luxury features list for you to choose from.
What do you think? Is the M2 worthy of the name and you behind the wheel or is it only a slight step up from the M240i and not enough of one to be an M-car. With a starting price of $52,695 and plenty of fun to be had on the road and track this is a car that’s hard to argue with, especially when you consider the top price is only $57,545. Stop listening to the naysayers about the M2, this car is fun and filled with BMW driving dynamics, let it be your sports car and you certainly won’t be let down.