Though it shares its bones with the regular BMW 2-series, the 2023 M2 takes that car’s already impressive performance and turns the heat way up. Not only does it sport a racier appearance and a chassis tuned for thrilling handling, but its twin-turbocharged inline-six pumps out 453 horsepower—just 20 shy of the output of the M3’s standard engine. Like the previous M2, the new one employs rear-wheel drive and comes with a standard six-speed manual transmission, which is rapid-acting medicine to turn frowns the other way around. The new-generation M2 features more tech than the last one, including BMW’s latest iDrive 8 infotainment interface and an accompanying digital dashboard. A host of driver-assistance features is now available too. The M2’s performance potential, combined with its generous standard equipment, means it’s a double threat—both a track-day hero and a seriously exciting daily driver.
What’s New for 2023?
Ever since the regular 2-series coupe was redesigned we’ve been waiting for it to spawn the powerhouse M2 variant.
Pricing and Which One to Buy
We’re notorious stick-shift enthusiasts so we’d go with the standard six-speed manual rather than opt for the slightly more expensive eight-speed automatic. The M Driver’s Package unlocks a higher top speed of 177 mph (versus 155 mph), so we’d also consider adding that. Otherwise, the M2 comes equipped with everything we think is essential as standard equipment in a pure driver’s car.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The 2023 M2 is powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six, which churns out a whopping 453 horsepower and 406 pound-ft of torque. This is the same engine that is standard in M3s and M4s, though here it makes 20 fewer horsepower; its torque output is identical, however. All M2s are rear-wheel drive, and buyers can choose from either a six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic transmission. During testing, the M2 hit 60 mph in 3.9 seconds while equipped with the standard six-speed manual transmission will. It crossed a quarter-mile in 12.2 seconds at 118 mph. The eight-speed will likely be a little quicker. Of course, it wouldn’t be an M car without a specially tuned suspension and various other chassis enhancements that help it to be the quickest version of the 2-series to circle a race circuit. We found the M2 to be nothing short of smile-inducing. Snapping into turns feels crispy, and the chassis is actively helping to keep you in control, even over slight bumps and imperfections mid-corner. The M2 is just pure Bavarian muscle.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
The EPA has given the M2 fuel economy estimates of 16 mpg city and 24 mpg highway when equipped with the six-speed manual; go with the eight-speed automatic and the highway rating drops to 23 mpg. During our 75-mph highway fuel-economy test route the M2 beat its EPA estimate by two mpg. For more information about the M2’s fuel economy, visit the EPA’s website.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Inside, the M2 features the same layout as the regular 2-series coupe. Passenger space is plentiful for front-seat riders but those relegated to the rear may be wishing you had sprung for a 3-series sedan. The design is racy, and the front seats feature dramatic bolstering and light-up M logos. Opt for the Carbon Fiber package and a layer of the stuff is draped on multiple surfaces of the M2’s cabin, and those sport seats are swapped out for even more aggressive body-hugging buckets that are said to save 24 pounds of weight.
Infotainment and Connectivity
A digital monolith of a screen informs the driver of every bit of data they could possibly need. A 12.3-inch screen behind the steering wheel serves as a reconfigurable gauge display and seamlessly transitions to a larger 14.9-inch touchscreen that provides access to the M2’s iDrive 8 infotainment system. Navigation is standard and a head-up display and 5G connectivity are both optional.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
All M2s come with basic driver-assistance features such as automated emergency braking and adaptive cruise control, but if you want more advanced tech, such as a stop-and-go feature for the cruise control, but you’ll have to pay extra and opt for the automatic transmission. For more information about the M2’s crash-test results, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) websites. Key safety features include:
- Standard automated emergency braking
- Standard lane-departure warning
- Standard adaptive cruise control
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Compared with its direct competitors, BMW has equal or better warranty coverage. Specifically, it has an unrivaled complimentary scheduled-maintenance program.
- Limited warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Powertrain warranty covers four years or 50,000 miles
- Complimentary maintenance is covered for three years or 36,000 miles
2023 BMW M2
Vehicle Type: front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, 4-passenger, 2-door coupe
Base/As Tested: $63,195/$75,345
Options: Carbon package (carbon-fiber trim, roof, and bucket seats, M Driver’s package), $9900; Live Cockpit Pro, $1100; adaptive LED headlights, $650; Shadowline package, $300; BMW M 50 Years emblems, $200
twin-turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 24-valve inline-6, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection
Displacement: 183 in3, 2993 cm3
Power: 453 hp @ 6250 rpm
Torque: 406 lb-ft @ 2650 rpm
Suspension, F/R: struts/multilink
Brakes, F/R: 15.0-in vented, cross-drilled disc/14.6-in vented, cross-drilled, disc
Tires: Michelin Pilot Sport 4S
F: 275/35ZR-19 (100Y) ★
R: 285/30ZR-20 (99Y) ★
Wheelbase: 108.1 in
Length: 180.3 in
Width: 74.3 in
Height: 55.2 in
Passenger Volume, F/M/R: 52/33 ft3
Trunk Volume: 14 ft3
Curb Weight: 3745 lb
C/D TEST RESULTS
30 mph: 1.5 sec
60 mph: 3.9 sec
100 mph: 8.7 sec
1/4-Mile: 12.2 sec @ 118 mph
130 mph: 14.6 sec
150 mph: 21.5 sec
Results above omit 1-ft rollout of 0.3 sec.
Rolling Start, 5–60 mph: 4.6 sec
Top Gear, 30–50 mph: 7.3 sec
Top Gear, 50–70 mph: 6.2 sec
Top Speed (mfr’s claim): 177 mph
Braking, 70–0 mph: 154 ft
Braking, 100–0 mph: 302 ft
Roadholding, 300-ft Skidpad: 1.03 g
C/D FUEL ECONOMY
Observed: 17 mpg
75-mph Highway Driving: 26 mpg
75-mph Highway Range: 350 mi
EPA FUEL ECONOMY
Combined/City/Highway: 19/16/24 mpg
C/D TESTING EXPLAINED
More Features and Specs