The 2023 BMW M2 has finally made its debut, bringing with it a whole lot of performance in a classic BMW compact sports coupe body. This will also be the final BMW M car that won’t feature a degree of electrification, as all new models moving forward will either be a plug-in hybrid or a fully electric vehicle.
Compared to the standard 2 Series, the M2’s exterior design is significantly more aggressive and sporty. Compared to the previous M2 and even the 1 Series M Coupe before that, this new model is far less subtle and more in-your-face than ever, with its large (but functional), squared-off vents for cooling the engine and brakes. Thankfully, the M2’s grille isn’t as large as that in the M3 and M4.
Elsewhere, the 2023 BMW M2 comes with staggered wheels measuring 19-inches at the front and 20 inches at the rear. These are also placed much wider than the standard 2 Series-50 mm more to be precise, and this is evident with its widened front and rear fenders that give the M2 a muscular stance. The rear end also has been revised with a new bumper, a more prominent rear diffuser, and vertical reflectors.
Inside, the 2023 BMW M2 is far more restrained. While its design is largely similar to the standard 2 Series, the main difference is the implementation of iDrive 8 and its two curved displays as opposed to the standard model’s iDrive 7. The M2’s iDrive 8 comes with unique BMW M functions such as the Drift Analyzer and lap timer.
Two seat options for the M2 are also available, with the first one being electrically-adjustable M Sport leather seats or for an additional penny, the M Carbon bucket seats. The latter may sound like a track-ready option (which it is), but they’re not as light as they could be. That’s because it retains the former’s electrical adjustment and even features illuminated M2 logos. Furthermore, the 2023 BMW M2’s interior can be trimmed in more carbon fiber inlays, while the doors feature the M tri-color pattern that serves as ambient lights.
Of course, the main highlight of the M2 is its 3.0-liter twin-turbo straight-six engine that produces 453 hp and 550 Nm of torque. It’s the same engine that powers the M3, M4, X3 M, and X4 M, but detuned to better fit the M2’s more compact dimensions. Power is then sent to the rear wheels via a standard-fit 8-speed automatic or an optional 6-speed manual. This powertrain is good enough for a 0-100 kph time of 3.8 seconds for the automatic or 4.1 seconds for the manual.
Of course, BMW M didn’t simply add power to the 2 Series and then called it an M2. The electronic stability control of the M2 is highly adjustable for varying degrees of wheel slip, while the adaptive suspension can be adjusted for track or on-road use. Even the brake feel can be adjusted with two modes, whether it’s for track use or comfort-oriented driving. An Active M Differential enables lock up to 100 percent on each side of the rear wheels, while an optional M Driver’s Package raises the top speed from 250 kph to 285 kph.
The 2023 BMW M2 will be assembled at the company’s new San Luis Potosí plant in Mexico, while the retail launch for the M2 will be in April 2023. Expect a Philippine launch to happen near the end of 2023.