ChrisTropea Associate Editor
7/18/23 8:08 a.m.

Sure, the styling of the new M2 is divisive at best, but is it fast enough to help you forget about what it looks like?

[Is the BMW M2 actually faster than it looks?]

We take one to our official test track, the Florida International Rally & Motorsport Park, to find out.

Presented by CRC Industries.

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theruleslawyer New Reader
7/18/23 10:11 a.m.

I'm just hoping the LCI refresh eventually fixes the cosmetic issues. Great car, but not one I lust after. I'd rather have the supra just based on looks. However if you're in the same class, the choice seems clear if you want to win.

Noddaz GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
7/18/23 11:14 a.m.

Ok, so it kind of looks like a Scion TC with flares.  What is the problem again?

RyanGreener (Forum Supporter)
RyanGreener (Forum Supporter) Reader
7/18/23 12:10 p.m.

Looks like a great car. I don't really like the direction BMW is going but they've been going towards that for years. Would consider an LCI eventually if I don't find other cool cars to play with.

ChrisTropea Associate Editor
7/18/23 12:12 p.m.

The looks of the M2 really grew on me as I spent some time with it at the track filming this and driving it around town. Regardless of looks the performance on track was impressive. 

Noddaz GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
7/18/23 2:18 p.m.

I just looked at the base price.  *gasp*

Duke MegaDork
7/18/23 2:21 p.m.
Noddaz said:

Ok, so it kind of looks like a Scion TC with flares.  What is the problem again?

It's... not great.  But it is a lot better than most of their other current offerings.


Msterbee Reader
12/13/23 2:04 p.m.

Fat. Not phat.

gencollon Reader
3/20/24 3:22 p.m.

I don't understand BMW.

You kind of said it yourself: 
The M2 has a disadvantage on paper pretty much everywhere...  

It's not good to look at... (it looks a bit better with a lip and spoiler/wing, and it'll probably grow on us all over time.)

If you really want performance, you don't want a big heavy sedan with lackluster suspension geometry and a suboptimal weight balance, a high CG and bad aero.

If you want a practical daily, who really cares about performance more than comfort, economy and usability?

BMW continues to thrive in this weird space where the car is a good, but compromised all-rounder.

Any 20 year old purpose built sports car with a few bolt ons will run circles around it on track.

I don't know who buys these things. You have to have money to burn, but you don't want a second car?


And I don't want to defend the Supra either, but the B58 vs S58 HP difference can easily be nullified (probably until the S58 gets turbo upgrades and lots of boost, where the lower CR and stronger? internals matter) 
-and at least the Supra is lighter and more efficient aerodynamically.




J.A. Ackley
J.A. Ackley Senior Editor
3/21/24 8:43 a.m.

I'm starting see more BMW M2s being used for track use. Despite their drawbacks, they're fairly fast out of the box. A few mods make them even faster.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
3/21/24 9:55 a.m.
gencollon said:

I don't understand BMW.


Any 20 year old purpose built sports car with a few bolt ons will run circles around it on track.

Okay you kind of had me until you got here, because the M2 on track and seriously more than the sum of its parts. The only OEMs we've tested that best it on our track are Corvettes, and the Z51 was only by a half second. Very little about the car makes sense when you look at the performance, because it doesn't seem like it should be capable of doing what it does, but it performs far better than the numbers and layout would suggest. 

DeadSkunk  (Warren)
DeadSkunk (Warren) UltimaDork
3/21/24 10:20 a.m.

It's the same size and weight as my last company car, a 2006 dodge Magnum wagon. The car was nice,handled well, but you were always aware of the heft when pushing it. I know it's personal preference, but I like lighter cars. As for the M2's looks, it not as bad as a lot of their recent offerings and better than many other performance cars. I'd like one at 3/4 scale, please.

gencollon Reader
3/21/24 6:40 p.m.

In reply to JG Pasterjak :

Maybe I was a bit cavalier... But I'm not talking about modern OEMs, I'm talking about older, smaller, lighter, double A arm, 2 seat cars that have track mods, and probably make a bit more power than they did when new... Which someone with M2 money could probably afford to go buy or build as a 2nd car.

Maybe I'm saying that I don't understand why someone would want a track-focused performance sedan in general. You just end up with a expensive compromised car.

here's an example: a Miata with a wing/splitter/R7s/turbo kit/coilover doing a 1:14.87 compared to the M2's 1:16.69
S2K with supercharger and wide wheels would be faster still... 

Your C5z project might be another good example. Etc.

and I found your Firm leaderboard here:


ojannen HalfDork
3/21/24 9:05 p.m.

In reply to gencollon :

So you are saying if you dump a bunch of money into a car that you will never get back, you can make a car that is slightly faster than a fully stock bmw with a warranty?

gencollon Reader
3/21/24 10:19 p.m.

I think you're misrepresenting what I wrote a bit

But you'll probably get more money back from your modded turbo Miata than buying a new Bimmer .

A M2 will cost you $1,200 a month and lose $10k in value over the 2 years you keep it or whatever... Not to mention that the warranty doesn't help you if they discover you've tracked it.

Let me know if you think I'm wildly incorrect or something.
Like I said: I don't get it, but I guess I'm not the target audience.

H2OPro GRM+ Memberand New Reader
6/24/24 4:14 p.m.

Drove an M2 in Europe at 5 tracks this spring. She is a big girl and likes to wrestle! 

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
7/1/24 9:13 a.m.

In reply to H2OPro :

It is big but, like JG said, is faster than you’d expect. Practical, too. 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
7/1/24 9:54 a.m.
David S. Wallens said:

In reply to H2OPro :

It is big but, like JG said, is faster than you’d expect. Practical, too. 

Bimmerworld just dropped a video this weekend testing their new M2 at VIR. Thing was absolutely hauling into T1. 150+ in as-delivered condition, which is absolutely mental. I need to bug James about their dyno numbers because BMW criminally underrated that thing, even more than thay usually do I think.

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
7/1/24 7:55 p.m.

Saw one the other day–in blue, of course. 

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