Start saving your pennies.
BMW's signature performance coupe isn't going anywhere despite dwindling global sales for coupes in general. For years, BMW has been perfecting the rear-wheel-drive compact coupe and its latest incarnation is the 2 Series. High-performance and track enthusiasts are flocking to the BMW M2. Neither one will leave BMW's lineup. In fact, a complete BMW 2 Series redesign is right around the corner. Don't mistake it for the FWD-based BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe; the next 2 Series and M2 will remain RWD.
Autocar has learned the latter is set to receive a new and more powerful engine. What will it be? A detuned version of BMW M's latest six-cylinder that will also be found in the upcoming next-gen M3 and M4. Currently, it powers the X3 M and X4 M. The S58 twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter six will replace the similar S55 found in the M2.
Sources claim it'll retain the same high-revving characteristics with a 7,200 rpm redline. An exact power output still remains known but in all likelihood, it'll be higher than the 405 hp developed by the M2 Competition. We figure it will be at least 420 hp in order to best the overseas-only 416 hp Mercedes-AMG A45 S. Total torque should hit about 406 lb-ft. Overall performance times should also improve and top speed will be around 175 mph.
The plan, at least for now, is not to give the next-gen M2 a mild-hybrid boost function at launch, although its CLAR platform can easily handle such a system. In fact, it's been engineered to accommodate a 48-volt electrical architecture, meaning, eventually, BMW M engineers will take advantage of that at some point during the next M2's project seven-year life cycle.
Also like the current model, the new M2 will offer a six-speed manual transmission and an electronically-controlled Active M Differential. An eight-speed torque-converter automatic gearbox will be optional, replacing the current dual-clutch unit. Another piece of information that'll surely keep purists happy is BMW's decision to keep the M2 RWD only. The new M3 and M4, for example, will offer AWD while RWD variants will be aimed at more serious drivers.
Styling-wise, the new M2 will share some front-end design elements from the 2 Series GC. And get this: BMW is, once again, considering adding a four-door M2 variant (the M2 Gran Coupe?) despite earlier reports claiming otherwise. How come? To combat the Mercedes-AMG CLA 45. An official debut date has yet to be announced but sales are expected to begin in 2022.