It’s been about three years since BMW discontinued the 1 Series M Coupe, the performance car that many described as the most exciting product the brand launched since the original E30 M3, and Munich has finally rolled out a successor to the compact coupe. It’s called the M2 and it generated a lot of hype among BMW purists.
There are plenty of reasons to get excited over the M2. It’s not only lighter and more affordable than the M4, it’s also more compact, which should make it that much more fun to drive at the track. In essence, it’s everything the 1M Coupe was and then some. In short, it’s a modern-day incarnation of the original E30 M3 – the vehicle regarded as the best road-going M car BMW ever produced.
But how does the M2 measure up against its three-year-old predecessor? Does it have what it takes to make us forget about the 1M Coupe? At first glance, the M2 is both quicker and more powerful, but there’s more to a sports car than just horsepower figures and lap times. The 1M Coupe is already an icon to BMW enthusiasts and because Munich built very few of them. Well-maintained examples are as expensive as a 2016 model year performance Bimmer.
The M2 has a big pair of shoes to fill, not to mention the fact that BMW went as far as to promote it as a spiritual successor to the E30 M3 and the 2002 Turbo. Now that’s a bold statement. With the M4 having received a lot of heat for being too big and heavy, the M2 needs to step up and take over from where the 1M Coupe left as the lightest and most nimble modern-day M car. That’s lot of pressure for both BMW and the M2.
Sure, a real-world test will settle this debate, but that’s unlikely to occur until 2016, when the M2 is scheduled to hit showrooms. However, with the new coupe out in the open now, it’s time to have a closer look at both the M2 and 1M to find out which one looks better on paper.
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