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New 2023 BMW M2: pricing, performance and specs

The BMW M2 has returned as a 453bhp, rear-wheel drive coupe

BMW’s M Division has had a rather busy 2022. The performance sub brand revealed several new cars to celebrate its 50th anniversary, including a the 2.7-tonne hybrid XM SUV and a long-awaited M3 Touring model. Here, however, is something to appease the BMW M purists, the second-generation M2 coupe.

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First deliveries of BMW’s new rear-wheel drive coupe will start from May 2023, although the M2 is available to order now from £61,495 - an increase of £2,325 from the initial launch price. 

The fastest version of the new 2 Series Coupé is arguably one of the main reasons why it was kept on BMW’s rear-drive CLAR platform, in contrast with sibling models such as the 1 Series that use fundamentally front-wheel-drive components.

The M2 has grown in any case; it’s now 4,575mm long, just over 11cm up on the previous M2, but also 16mm wider and 11mm lower.The appearance is in keeping with the previous M2’s aggressive stance, thanks to heavily blistered wheelarches that reflect increases in track width of 49mm at the front and 18mm at the rear compared with the standard 2 Series Coupé, matching, BMW says, the figures of the larger M4 Coupé.

The front features a widened double-kidney grille, but it’s dominated by a series of huge air intakes in the lower bumper. The centre section of the front splitter is finished in black, creating the visual impression of a gap between the outmost scallops in the body-coloured bumper.

At the rear there’s a quad-tailpipe layout, sharp surfacing on the lower bumper with vertical light inserts, a small spoiler integrated into the edge of the bootlid, and a deep-looking diffuser finishing things off. If you want a more conspicuous look, BMW will soon launch an M Performance Parts catalogue for the M2, in a similar vein to the M3 Touring’s optional package.

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Under the bonnet is a version of the same turbocharged 3.0-litre six-cylinder petrol engine used in the current M3. In the M2 it has been retuned to produce 453bhp – less than the larger car, but 9bhp more than even the more extreme CS version of the previous M2 – and 550Nm of torque. That’s enough, BMW says, for a 0-62mph time of 4.1 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 155mph.

These figures will vary depending on precise specs, however, because buyers can sacrifice a tenth of a second on the acceleration time to have a six-speed manual gearbox instead of the standard eight-speed automatic. And an optional M Driver’s package can unlock a higher top speed of 177mph. Additionally, more potent versions of the car are likely to be already in the pipeline.

The M2’s chassis features additional torsional bracing, an M active differential, adaptive suspension and 10 levels of traction control adjustability. The various drive modes available include a track setting that allows all driver assistance to be deactivated.

The car sits on lightweight 19-inch alloy wheels at the front, with 20-inch items at the rear, and true to form for M Division, the weight distribution is 50:50.

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All models will come equipped with M front seats with electric adjustment and heating, a curved widescreen display that mixes a 12.9-inch instrument panel with a 14.9-inch infotainment touchscreen, a Harman Kardon audio system and a carbon-fibre roof, along with adaptive LED headlights.

Options will include the aforementioned M Driver’s package but also track-focused tyres, M carbon seats that save more than 10kg over the regular items, and different interior flourishes in either aluminium or carbon fibre. BMW says that the increased top speed won't be available for at least 1,242 miles of running in. 

The M Driver’s Package can be included within the £6,345 M Race Track Package which adds a carbon fibre roof, carbon fibre trim and double-spoke wheels with track tyres.

There are two non-metallic paint finishes in Zandvoort Blue and Alpine White and three metallic finishes available as no cost options - Black Sapphire, Toronto Red and Brooklyn Grey.  

BMW M2 M Performance Parts option

As we’ve seen on the M3, BMW will bring out a raft of cosmetic tweaks to the M2 under its Performance Parts banner. At the front we can see the new ‘50 Years of M’ badge that pays tribute to the old roundel design. There’s also a lower lip splitter and a new air intake design behind the lower and side grilles. A tow strap is also included to give off the track car look. The engine and gearbox remain unchanged from the standard M2. 

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At the side we can see contrasting black gloss wing mirrors, as well as a new design of alloy wheels - finished in black or gold. Behind both sets of wheels we can see horizontal strakes, plus a stone guard in front of the rear axle - similar to that of the old Porsche 930 Turbo. 

At the rear we can spot a roof spoiler, designed after the classic style of the 3.0 CSL. Behind that there’s a carbon fibre large wing which will surely affect the downforce and drag coefficient of the M2. If the fixed rear wing isn't to your taste you can also specify a lip spoiler. The rear bumper has also been remodelled and while titanium quad exhausts remain, they’re diagonally stacked in a similar manner to the Performance Parts exhaust system on the M3 and M4. 

BMW says the M Performance adjustable suspension offers a more direct connection for the driver and the ride height  can be changed by 10mm. 

Inside, the customer can choose between carbon fibre-backed M Sport seats or with gloss carbon on the back. At the from the seats have "M Performance" embroidered on them. There's also more Alcantara on the steering wheel with a blue centre marker and the armrest also gets a bespoke M Performance trim.

Click here for our list of the best performance cars on sale...

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Senior news reporter

A keen petrol-head, Alastair Crooks has a degree in journalism and worked as a car salesman for a variety of manufacturers before joining Auto Express in Spring 2019 as a Content Editor. Now, as our senior news reporter, his daily duties involve tracking down the latest news and writing reviews.

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