• BMW M’s First Electric Car Is Definitely Coming and Will Be Faster Than the M4 CSL

The M CEO predicts an improved electrified M car above previous iterations fueled by ICEs

By 2030, BMW will go full electric, as many of its competitors will. But, unlike the non-performance-oriented lineup, the M division finds it challenging to make battery-operated full-fat M cars, as the weight factor will snatch away the joy of driving them around racetracks. Of course, enthusiasts like you and me love the M3 and M5->art188713] because of the true character they hold. But let’s face it- electrification is the way to look forward, and CEO Frank Van Meel has confirmed it.

The M Performance division has a couple of electric-only models, like the iX M60, i4 M50, and the impending i7 M70, with a claimed 660 horsepower. These EV models from the M division are a turning point for the sub-brand. During an interview with Road & Track at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, the Hero of M town stated: “I think there is no alternative to going electric. The only question is when.” It is clear that the M division is waiting for the right technology that would be the right fit for the M cars. He continued by describing the M4 CSL as the present pinnacle of the M division, and that building an EV faster than the M4 CSL would be a complex decision. But it could be possible.

BMW M's First Electric Car Is Definitely Coming and Will Be Faster Than the M4 CSL Exterior
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Van Meel is determined to make the best out of the M cars, even in the era of EVs: “the DNA where we come from is that regardless of what powertrain we use, a new M3 should like an M3 and be better than its predecessor, no matter what is inside. That’s the goal we have for the electric M cars of the future, so there’s no need to be afraid of the drivetrain, since it won’t change what M stands for. We wouldn’t do it. It has to be an M3 or an M5, and it has to be better than its predecessor.”

While pointing towards the second M division-only car, the XM, Frank compared the high-performance SUV to the LMDh race car prototype, unveiled in June 2022. The S68 engine coupled to a plug-in hybrid system connects both of them. He added, “you can see that when it works in racing, it works for high-performance road cars as well.” Before the EV takeover, the M division will continue making hybrid powertrains, and the XM will be the first example.

BMW M's First Electric Car Is Definitely Coming and Will Be Faster Than the M4 CSL Exterior
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When a journalist from Road & Track questioned the M CEO about the weight gain from generation to generation and how that can affect the upcoming cars from the performance division, he replied with confidence: “what you can see is that over the years, cars have grown bigger. Also, a lot of regulations and more comfort functions came to cars, so they got heavier over time. Still, I think what we managed to do quite well is to keep that weight increase as low as possible and make the cars even faster.”

2022 has been a celebration of the M division’s 50th anniversary, and we are a couple of months away from the M2 and the XM launch, which is destined to be the heaviest M car and will pack 750 horsepower.

Source: Road & Track

Amreetam Basu
Amreetam Basu
Automotive Journalist
After working predominantly as a freelancer at CarHP/CarIndigo, Amreetam joined the TopSpeed team as a journalist in September 2021. In a world where SUVs are booming, he favors sedans and adores BMWs and Mercedes, with a special spot for Lexus and Genesis. He is currently pursuing Master of Arts in History and is 23 years old.  Read full bio
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