By Ronan Glon
Thursday, May 1st, 2014 @ 3:03 am
 
A new report finds BMW has approved the launch a range-topping, M-tuned variant of the new 2-Series coupe. Scheduled to arrive in late 2015 at the earliest, the car will likely be christened M2, a name that BMW trademarked in Germany nearly three years ago.

Billed as the successor to the well-regarded 1-Series M, the M2 will gain a full body kit inspired by the track-only M235i Racing (pictured) that was unveiled recently. Expect a highly-sculpted front bumper, a buldged hood, fender flares, side skirts and a trunk-mounted spoiler to be part of the package. An air diffuser with four exhaust tips will complete the muscular look.

BMW will tap into its carbon fiber expertise in order to lower the car's weight and improve efficiency, agility and performance. Although the M2 will unmistakably look like a member of the 2-Series family when viewed from the outside, it will ride on a heavily-modified chassis packed with technology gleaned from the recently-launched M3/M4 duo.

Staying in line with the rest of BMW's M-badged lineup, the M2 will boast a sport-focused interior with bucket seats for the front passengers, a M-specific instrument cluster, a sport steering wheel and available carbon fiber trim on the dashboard.

Official technical details are not available but rumors indicate the M2 will be powered by a twin-turbocharged variant of the 3.0-liter straight-six found under the hood of the M235i. The turbo-six will reportedly send anywhere between 365 and 375 horsepower to the rear wheels via either an eight-speed automatic transmission or a six-speed manual unit, enabling the M2 to reach 60 mph from a stop in a little over four seconds.

All models regardless of transmission type will come standard with an electronic limited-slip differential.

Look for official details about the 2016 M2 to emerge over the coming year. When it lands in showrooms, the smallest member of BMW's M lineup will retail for approximately $55,000.

Unlike the aforementioned 1-Series M, the M2 is expected to bow as a regular-production model that will be readily available all around the globe.