New Spy Shots Hint That BMW Is Still Trying to Fine-Tune the 2021 M3
BMW just unveiled the M3 and M4 performance compacts, and we already know everything about them. We’ve seen the updated exterior design with the massive kidney grille and how much power comes from the revised inline-six engine. So why should we care that an M3 was spotted testing on public roads with no camo on the body? Well, these are the first shots of the performance sedan in real life: no studio shots, no editing, no digital glitz or glamour. Until the M3 rolls off the assembly line and hits public roads, this is our best look at the four-door sedan in the wild.
Check Out These Spy Shots for the Next-Gen BMW M4 GTS!
BMW has yet to introduce the next-generation M4, but it’s already working on a beefed-up version of the upcoming coupe. Our paparazzi just sent us a couple of photos showing a camouflaged BMW M4 that looks notably different than the production model that will debut later this year. Specifically, it features a center-mounted exhaust system and, more importantly, a rear wing. This can only mean one thing: we’re looking at the upcoming BMW M4 GTS.
That Weird 8 Series Mule Is Probably a Hybrid M8 CSL
We were quite surprised to see what we believed at the time was a BMW 8 Series with a mid-engine configuration. Due to the weird vents in the rear quarter glass, the louvers on the rear window, and the fact that whatever was behind the front seats was covered, there was certainly something going on. A few days after those spy shots started making rounds, we learned that BMW claimed that “mid-engined 8 Series” was little more than a test vehicle that’s passed from department to department to test new technology and mechanical goodies. At that time, we admitted that a mid-engine configuration was unlikely, but despite the lack of electric motor whine, BMW could be testing a hybrid powertrain setup. According to a new report, we may have been right.
That Mid-Engined BMW 8 Series Isn’t Anything Special After All
Like every other automotive outlet on the sun, we too got those images of what appeared to be a mid-engined 8 Series doing some fine testing work with minimal amounts of camo. It had all the right elements for a mid-engined car; well, kind of. The intakes in the rear side glass were a little too small to feed a beefy inline-six or stout V-8, and the engine tone reportedly sounded like a six-cylinder, and there was no electric whine. The only real piece of evidence that this was a mid-engined mule was the fact that there was a blanket covering something in the back seat. Now, we know what was going on with the mule and, unfortunately, it’s not what anyone was hoping.
Why Is BMW Testing This Weird Mid-Engined 8 Series Mule?
Our paparazzi just spotted a partly camouflaged BMW 8 Series near the Nurburgring track. Judging by the body elements that are hidden, it appears to be a facelifted version of the big coupe, but some other details suggest that BMW may be testing something entirely different, including some sort of mid-engined mule. What is Munich up to?
2021 BMW i3
BMW is one of the most proactive automakers to advance towards electrification. The company has not just announced new electric models, but will also electrify the existing lineup. Recently, it revealed the iX3, which carries over all the shenanigans of the regular X3, but with an electric powertrain. Recently, the electric version of the 3 Series was spotted yet again and it seems to be on the same transformational path as the electric X3.
We Can Finally Say That the 2022 BMW 2 Series Coupe Will Be Rear-Wheel Drive
In production since 2013, the current BMW 2 Series is a bit long in the tooth as of 2020. But we know that the German company is working on a new-generation version because we keep seeing it being tested in various locations. Our paparazzi just sent us a new batch of spy shots, and it seems that the upcoming 2 Series will look a lot more muscular than the outgoing model. But there’s more good news to consider.
2021 BMW 4 Series Coupé
Remember the excessively polarizing BMW Concept 4 shown at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show? Well, some of its distinctive styling cues are bound to be trickled down to the upcoming BMW 4 Series Coupé and we’ve already seen pics that suggest the oversized kidney grille is one such element.
Although we’ll have to wait a while to see the new 4 Series take a bow, our spy photographers caught a heavily camouflaged test mule and managed to sneak inside for a couple of interior shots. Read all about it and more in the in-depth review below.
Update 4/28/2020: The BMW 4 Series Coupe was spotted testing the the wild once again, this time with much less camo and padding. Check it out in all its glory in the Spy Shots section below!
2022 BMW iNext Electric SUV
When BMW launched the Vision iNext concept at the 2018 Los Angeles Motor Show, it took the world by surprise. It was supposed to be the next big thing to come out of the company’s stable, but all people could talk about was that gaudy grille that eclipsed everything else.
The crossover with the Bavarian DNA is designed to combine advanced autonomous systems, connectivity, and electrification blended into one recipe that is touted to be the company’s flagship electric product. The model sits on a new platform and will provide the building blocks for the automaker moving forward. Is this a preview of what we can expect from BMW 10 years down the line?
2021 BMW M5
The BMW 5 Series is in line for a mid-cycle refresh and it won’t be long before it comes to full effect. What’s more, the revamp will also affect the M5 performance sedan, as our spy photographers have spotted a heavy-camo’ed facelifted BMW M5 mule out on the open road.
BMW is tight-lipped about the revised M5 (as it is about the 5 Series as a whole) but the test prototype displays a couple of interesting changes that touch on the front and rear light clusters and bumpers. There’s no word on power upgrades yet, but let’s take a better look at what the revamped M5 might have in store for us.
Update 2/21/20200: The 2021 BMW M5 was just spotted doing some cold-weather testing and it’s starting to come together nicely. Check out the new spy shots and what we’ve learned in our “Spy Shots” section below!
2021 BMW M4 Convertible
The 2021 BMW M4 Convertible is the upcoming, next-generation version of the company’s beefed-up compact drop-top. Set to be unveiled alongside the Coupe, the 2021 M4 Convertible will share almost all exterior features with the hard-top model, save for changes necessary to accommodate a folding roof.
Likely based on the BMW Concept 4, the 2021 M4 Convertible will probably feature the massive front grille seen on the show car. Like most recent M-badged models, the 2021 M4 Convertible will most likely arrive with two engine options, with the more powerful version called M4 Competition. Let’s find out more about the upcoming convertible in the speculative review below.
2022 BMW 3 Series Electric
The BMW 3 Series is arguably Bimmer’s most popular model, and it’s about to go electric. The all-electric 3 Series is one of the 25 electric and electrified models that BMW has in the pipeline, and while most of those models will probably end up being electric crossovers and SUVs, the 3 Series EV is arguably the most intriguing, in part because it’s shaped as a sedan and has big shoes to fill.
Recent spy shots of a heavily camouflaged 3 Series sporting “Electric Test Vehicle” stickers recently made their way into the Interwebs, providing us with all we need to know that the car under all the swirly bits is nothing else but the electric 3 Series. There’s no set timetable on when the electric 3 Series will hit the market, but with testing ongoing, it wouldn’t be surprising to see BMW debut the model this year ahead of a possible launch in 2021.
2021 BMW 6 Series GT
The turn of the year marked the official demise of the BMW 6 Series in the U.S. But while it will no longer be offered in the U.S. market, the 6er will live on on the other side of the Atlantic. Proof of that comes in the form of new spy photos our eagle-eyed photographers culled of the soon-to-release, mid-cycle 6 Series Gran Turismo. Prototypes of the updated 6 Series GT have been spotted sporting barely enough camouflage to cover its entire body. A few physical changes are expected to come for the facelifted model, including some design cues that we’ve already seen in other new Bimmer models. The updated BMW 6 Series GT is scheduled to hit the market in the middle of 2020 as a 2021 model. It stands as the last 6 Series model in the market.
2021 BMW 4 Series Convertible
BMW is set to launch an all-new 4-Series two-door sometime in 2019 or 2020, and while the G23 coupe version will not feature any dramatic changes over the current model, the G22 droptop will. Spy shots indicate that for the first time in two generations (E93 and F33), BMW is giving up on the folding hardtop design in favor of the more traditional soft top option which it last used on the E46 model discontinued in 2006.
Heavy camouflage covers the prototype spotted, but this important change is quite evident as the canvas top is left completely bare (quite obviously on purpose). It might be an illusion caused by the camo, but it also appears this new 4-Series has a longer hood and rear decklid compared to its predecessor.
Update 12/30/2019: The BMW 4 Series Convertible was caught on the back of a transport on the way to some final testing before its big debut. Check out the latest pictures in our “Spy Shots” section below.
2022 BMW iX2
The BMW X2 is barely two years old as a model and it’s already headed down the path of electrification. A prototype version of Bimmer’s relatively new compact crossover has been spotted in the snowy abode of Sweden, and while it’s easy to assume that said model is the plug-in hybrid variant of the X2, the truth is that it’s not.
This crossover is the test mule of the iX2, the all-electric version of the X2 crossover that will be launched sometime in 2021 or 2022. The spy photos captured the iX2 prototype sans any camouflage and that’s not by accident. Visually, it’s still the X2 but that little sticker that says “electric test vehicle” confirms that, other than a few design changes, this prototype is an all-electric crossover hiding in the X2’s clothing.
BMW M8 Caught Testing With Rear Wing
Whether you like or dislike the idea that the BMW M8 is basically a supercar within the BMW lineup, the Munich-based company is currently testing the large coupe with a massive rear wing. BMW already has a long history of large, fast coupes prepped for track action. Just remember all the M6 GT3 cars in the Blancpain and British GT series. In fact, the BMW M8 first debuted as an endurance racer called the M8 GTE. Now, a production model that hauls a big wing can mean a multitude of things - an additional M Performance model, an early prototype of the BMW M8 GTS, or the BMW M8 CS. Or just a prototype created for the development of the next-gen aero for the whole fleet of dangerously quick M cars.
Far away from the spotlights and the glamour of the Frankfurt Car Show we spotted this BMW M8 testing today. So, what’s so strange about a M8 that’s already official you might ask? A wing!
We noticed that this M8 prototype has a big wing in the back, a wing that’s never been seen before on the 8 Series and of course that wing makes us wonder what this could be. A special aerodynamic package? A Clubsport model? Well, for now we don’t really know what BMW is up to with this M8 but we are investigating more and hopefully we will find out. Until then just enjoy the photos.