We’re just going to save you a lot of trouble and say that, if you’re looking for a first sports car — one that’ll teach you to be a better driver, one you could take on the occasional track day, one that’ll smoke its tires and also handle your commute — we’ve found it for you. It’s the BMW M2.
There’s never been one of these before. M Division is like BMW’s skunk works. It builds all the really cool stuff: better, stronger, faster, rarified machines for connoisseurs.
In the M lineup, you’ve always had the iconic M3 and M5, which were recently joined by the M6 and M4. And now there’s this M2.
Yes, sorry, it’s a confusing mess of nomenclature — just because they make innovative cars, doesn’t mean they come up with innovative names — but all you really need to know is that the M2 is the newest, smallest, most affordable car from M Division. It’s also our new favourite.
It doesn’t feel like the product of a multinational conglomerate. It doesn’t look like it was built by committee. It feels special, the pet project of a bunch of very keen — slightly mad — German engineers.
The littlest M flies under the radar. It looks relatively harmless, like the BMW 2 Series upon which it’s based. The big wheels and wide fender flares make it special, though. Under the sheet metal, it borrows the front and rear axles from the bigger M3 and a turbocharged straight-six so powerful it has no business being in such a tiny car. But these things make it the sort of car that’s fun to drive at any speed.
Cars always tend toward a bigger is better ethos, where more is more. What makes the M2 feel so special then is that it flies in the face of that prevailing wisdom. It’s so simple: great engine and a great chassis. If it doesn’t make you smile, then you don’t understand cars.
In fact, I’m putting my deposit in now.