SMC Asia Car Distributors Corp., the official importer and distributor of BMW in the Philippines, held a special preview of what could be the last BMW model available with a manual gearbox—the second-generation BMW M2 Coupè.
Compact yet oh-so-powerful
The BMW M2’s athletic appearance stems from its compact dimensions, strong proportions, and hallmark M design features. Its large, frameless BMW kidney grille with its horizontal bars, combined with the almost rectangular contours of its three-section lower air intake, gives it its familiar M look. Clearly designed surfaces, prominently flared side skirts, and muscular wheel arches set the tone for the side view. The rear end features an eye-catching spoiler lip on the boot lid, vertically arranged reflectors, a diffuser insert for the rear apron, and two pairs of exhaust tailpipes positioned a long way in from the outer edges. Exclusive to the BMW M2 Carbon trim is an M Carbon roof that reduces vehicle weight by around six kilograms.
Technology and design
Inside the cabin of the BMW M2 is a masterclass of luxury, sportiness, and technology. The cockpit features a driver-centric design with M-specific readouts, controls, setup options, and the advanced BMW Widescreen Display. Driving-related information includes shift lights that appear in a new graphical layout on the 12.3-inch information display. Some of the items that can be accessed from the 14.9-inch control display are M-specific widgets for vehicle setup and tires.
The BMW Curved Display and the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant form part of the latest-generation BMW iDrive, which is based on BMW Operating System 8. As expected, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto come standard in the new BMW M2.
The driver and front passenger bucket seats have a model-specific design with Sensatec/Alcantara surfaces for the BMW M2 Pure. Meanwhile, the Carbon trim gets M Carbon bucket seats that use carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) in the structural elements of the seat cushion and backrest and feature cut-outs in the side bolsters and below the head restraints, which shaves around 10.8 kilograms off the vehicle’s weight.
Comfort features of the M2 include three-zone automatic climate control, BMW Live Cockpit Plus, complete with BMW Maps navigation system, ambient lighting, a Hi-Fi speaker system for the BMW M2 Pure, and a Harman Kardon system for the Carbon trim.
The M2’s center console is pretty busy. Aside from the shifter, the Setup button provides direct access to the settings options for the engine, chassis, steering, braking system, and M Traction Control. Two overall vehicle setups can be stored and retrieved using the red M buttons in front of the paddle shifters on the steering wheel. The M Mode button on the center console can be used to adjust both the level of driver assistance system activity and the content shown in the information display with a choice of road, sport, and track settings. Aside from M Traction Control, the standard-fit M Drive Professional also includes the M Drift Analyzer and M Latimer.
Power and control
The M2 is powered by a 3-liter, 6-cylinder engine developed with M TwinPower Turbo technology and high revving capability. The high-performance mill produces a maximum output of 460 hp, 90 hp more than its predecessor. It produces a peak torque of 550 Nm @ 2,650–5,870 rpm, with maximum output reached at 6,250 rpm. The new engine revs to a maximum of 7,200 rpm. The power is accompanied by an emotionally rich soundtrack generated by the M-specific exhaust system with electrically controlled flaps. The engine is paired with an eight-speed M Steptronic transmission with Drivelogic as standard. It can go from zero to 100 km/h in 4.3 seconds with the eight-speed M Steptronic transmission, with a top speed of 250 km/h for the M2 Pure, while the M2 Carbon, which comes equipped with the M Driver’s Package, reaches a top speed of 290 km/h.
The new BMW M2’s traditional form of dynamic performance is also embodied by its rear-wheel drive. The standard M Traction Control function allows the driver to tweak the settings to his or her liking, with individual intervention thresholds for wheel slip limitation and a choice of ten stages.
Another contributor to the sublime dynamics of the BMW M2 is the Active M Differential at the rear axle. Also included as standard, it can seamlessly generate a locking effect of up to 100 percent whenever required. This optimizes traction on road surfaces by offering different levels of adhesion for the left- and right-hand rear wheels, for example, as well as improving power transfer when accelerating hard out of corners.
Sophisticated chassis technology and precisely controllable handling
The new BMW M2’s compact dimensions, short wheelbase, almost perfectly balanced 50:50 weight distribution, and sophisticated chassis technology combine to deliver precise handling. Its agility, dynamism, and precision also benefit from the excellent torsional stiffness of the body structure and chassis mountings, helped by bespoke bracing.
The M2’s double-joint spring strut front axle and the five-link rear axle come with M-specific kinematics. Other standard equipment includes an adaptive M suspension with electronically controlled dampers, M Servotronic steering with variable ratio, Dynamic Stability Control, including M Dynamic Mode, and powerful M compound brakes with six-piston fixed-caliper brakes at the front and single-piston floating-caliper brakes at the rear.
The new BMW M2 comes with 19-inch light-alloy wheels at the front and 20-inch items at the rear, each representing an increase of one inch in the diameter of the wheels fitted as standard on the BMW M3 and BMW M4 models.
The BMW M2 Coupè is available in Alpine White, Zandvoort Blue, M Brooklyn Grey, Black Sapphire, and M Toronto Red metallic shades exclusive to this model. The BMW M2 Pure retails for Php 5,990,000, while the Carbon trim is priced at Php 8,890,000. Both come with a 5-year comprehensive BMW warranty.