A BMW M2 is set to be launched as part of an expanded range of BMW M cars that could also include M versions of the X3 and X4, new BMW M boss Frank van Meel has revealed at the Detroit motor show.
Van Meel, who recently made the switch from Audi’s RS division to head up BMW’s M range, said the previous 1-series M Coupé is a car he is very fond of, and therefore is a car “he’d love to do something in the direction of again”.
Spy photographers now regularly catch M2 prototypes in testing, but van Meel stopped short of officially confirming the model for production. Van Meel was less enthusiastic about the idea of an M3 Touring or flagship M7 - his vision of the perfect embodiment of an M car is the current M3/M4 - but he was more open and optimistic on the chances of M versions of the X3 and X4 making production.
“There are more opportunities than at present,” he said, “but not on every BMW as it makes no sense.
“There might be a business opportunity with the X3/X4,” he added. “We’re continuing our success story with new versions of the X5 M and X6 M.”
However, van Meel did confirm that four-wheel drive would reach future BMW M cars, with the next-generation M5 and M6 being the most likely candidates. But he said the models would still be rear-biased, and the technology would be used to increase traction in order to avoid the understeer traits with which all-wheel-drive performance cars are associated.
“The philosophy will remain rear-wheel drive, even if there is all-wheel drive,” he said. “As we increase power and torque, then the M5 and M6 will have large outputs, so we’ll look at those solutions [all-wheel drive] with these cars in the future.”