Report: BMW M2 to get 350-hp tri-turbo inline-6, rear-wheel drive

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2011 BMW 1-Series M Coupe

2011 BMW 1-Series M Coupe

BMW's renewal of the M2 trademark sparked the idea of a smaller M car back to life just a few weeks ago, and now a whole slew of new details have emerged from M Division managing director Dr. Friedrich Nitschke. While we take them as speculation only at this point, the figures point toward a very interesting car.

If you're wondering what the heck an M2 might be based on, the best guess at the moment is that it would sport what is effectively a rebadged next-generation 1-Series platform. The 1-Series is rumored to be renamed 2-Series, possibly joined by the 3-Series coupes, to make room for a smaller 1-Series and a new 4-Series line, which might include the 3-Series GT.

Confused yet? So are we. At any rate, according to AutoExpress, the new M2, whatever it's based on, will get a front-engine/rear-drive layout, a 3.0-liter turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine, and 350 horsepower. If that sounds a lot like the 1-Series M Coupe, it is. It's possible that the 1M could live on as the M2, despite BMW's assurances that the 1M is a one-and-done, limited-volume model. A name change would technically satisfy the statement while letting them build more of the immensely fun, popular cars.

Other reported details on the M2 include a DCT transmission--a notable deviation from the manual-only 1M--and a possible tri-turbo system. Extensive use of carbon fiber reinforced plastic is also expected, to reduce weight and leverage volume from BMW's Project i works.

Stay tuned for more information on the M2 as it develops on the road to production, which could start as soon as 2014.

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