The 450hp BMW M2 CS is here to bring balance to the Force

By topgear, 07 November 2019

“The BMW M2 CS is positioned one rung up the performance ladder from the M2 Competition,” BMW helpfully points out. That position being: just to the left of your heart, up a bit, snuggled into that little spot that sometimes makes you squeak with joy.

Friends, the BMW M2 CS is here; a 450hp track-honed road car that aims to send this generation of 2 Series Coupe off into the stars with a big, fat powerslide. Oh sure, BMW trumpets its “class leading” handling and precision. But mostly: powerful straight-six, manual gearbox, rear-wheel-drive.

That engine. It’s ‘derived’ from the M4 Competition’s straight-six. So it’s a twin-turbo 3.0-litre, producing 450hp – 40hp up from the ‘regular’ M2 Competition – and 550Nm of torque which are meaningless unless you consider the context.

(Click HERE to read about the M2 Competition in a showdown with the 1M)

BMW reckons on 0-100km/h in 4.2s with the standard (yay!) 6spd manual, or 4.0s flat if you spec the 7spd double-clutcher.

Tick the Driver’s Pack box, and the top speed rises to 280km/h (limited), and you’re looking at 10.2l/100km – oh what the hell, you’re not looking at l/100km. You’re looking at skids.

Thus, it gets adaptive dampers that cycle through ever more aggressive modes until you inevitably feel a bit unwell, and larger M Sport brakes as standard.

The electric power steering has been tuned by M, and there’s an active M diff that works with the traction control said to give greater agility and negate understeer.

Hit the MDM button, and you get a “greater degree of wheel slip”, which is a non-fun way of saying ‘watch this’.

You will most certainly have spotted the carbonfibre roof and scooped bonnet, the latter said to better aid that sixer’s cooling, the former apparently providing greater body rigidity and because of its design, a better noise inside. There’s no trim on it, that’s why.

New front splitter? Check. Boot lip spoiler? Also check. Rear diffuser? Big fat yes. It hides those monster brakes (you can option ceramics if you quite literally like to squeak with joy) behind 19in alloys wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres, though if you want to drive it on human roads, Michelin Super Sports can be optioned at no cost instead.

There is a new exhaust function that gives “a sound worthy of a BMW M model”, there are lightweight seats stolen from the M4 CS, lots of Alcantara inside, CFRP panels and door handles, and contrast stitching.

As well as being positioned above the M2 Comp – already a fabulous thing – BMW wants “a younger target audience” for this new CS. So, fellow kids, how do you like it?

STORY Vijay Pattni

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