BMW’s M cars are unquestionably the sportiest in the range having input from their Motorsport division.
The M2 is the smallest M car in the BMW line-up, using the 2 Series coupe shell but widened by 80mm at the rear. BMW are claiming a more “back to basics” performance car.
So no trickery adaptive suspension here, or all wheel drive and less gadgetry to distract.
Just raw power, all 370 bhp of it, rear wheel drive with a limited slip differential, non adaptive sports suspension and either a manual or as tested here a sequential double clutch 7-speed paddle shift gearbox.
The M2’s main rivals are cars such as the superb Porsche Cayman 718, the Audi TTS, and Alfa 4C for example.
So has it got street cred?
The styling is rather nice, with lots of small details such as the discreet front and rear aerodynamic spoilers, large front air intakes, four rear tailpipes and of course fabulous black 19 inch alloy wheels all combining to show that this is no ordinary BMW coupe, yet it does not scream “performance car” avoiding items like huge rear wings.
A welcome and very appealing looking car with real head turning presence on the road.
So what is it like inside?
The cabin is relatively plain and shares much with the 2 Series but with items such as the very supportive sports seats with blue stitching, M2 badging, multifunction sports steering wheel and judicious use of aluminium and carbon look trim you do feel its a bit more special than the standard car.
The list of standard equipment from both a safety and comfort point of view is as you might expect very good indeed.
But this car is all about the driving and here is where the cabin really cossets the driver with a super driving position, everything is just in the right place.
You sit down in the car and feel part of it.
Its practical too being a reasonable four seater with a decent boot so the new M2 will appeal to those who want the performance but do not want to skimp on practicality.
What is under the bonnet?
A 3.0 litre, twin turbochrged, 370 bhp, 6 cylinder petrol which in this case is mated to a 7-speed twin clutch M DCT gearbox which can be operated in full auto mode or with a variety of settings, Comfort, Sport, or the most extreme “Sport Plus” mode.
Gear shifts in this mode are held to the red line and the intervention of all the stability control is reduced to a minimum allowing the driver to fully exploit the rear wheel drive characteristics.
A mode frankly best suited to a track day event as you really can get the tail drifting, its pure driving heaven.
Using the steering wheel mounted paddle shifts allows a more involving experience too.
Overall then the M2 is absolutely fabulous to drive, very fast, fun and yet manageable.
0 to 100km takes just 4.1 seconds while top speed is electronically limited to 250km/h.
its blisteringly quick! Road tax is €750.00.
Will I enjoy driving it?
With a near perfect weight distribution the new M2 is a real cracker to drive quickly.
It displays a wonderful poise and balance and allows the driver to fully exploit this lovely chassis.
The only real negative is the overly firm ride on anything other than a billiard table smooth road surface.
The car can feel quite fidgety on anything less than a smooth road.
However it puts a real smile on your face and the soundtrack from that straight six is intoxicating even if some of it is synthetically generated through the cars speaker system.
So what is the final verdict?
If you are looking for an exhilarating compact sports coupe that has two useable back seats and a decent boot then this is it.
It's not as involving or as pure a sports car as the Porsche Cayman but does offer similar performance with a bit more practicality.
In summary then.
It is wonderful to drive, beautifully built, well kitted out and offers blistering performance.
Prices start at €77,520.00. Enjoy. its a cracker!