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BMW stripped weight and added power to make its pint-sized M2 even better

BMW’s M division may be spending more time on SUVs, but it still knows how to make a proper sports coupe. Debuting at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show, the 2020 BMW M2 CS is a lighter, more hardcore version of M’s smallest model, with more power than the current M2 Competition.

The M2 CS uses the same 3.0-liter, twin-turbocharged inline-six as the M2 Competition and the larger M4. But in the CS, the engine makes 444 horsepower. That’s 39 hp more than the M2 Competition. Torque output remains unchanged at 406 pound-feet. The M2 CS retains the Competition’s rear-wheel-drive layout, with six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch transmissions available.

BMW estimates zero to 60 mph in 4.0 seconds with the manual transmission, and 3.8 seconds with the dual-clutch gearbox. That’s an identical time to the Competition model with the manual transmission, but a 0.4-second decrease with the dual-clutch transmission. A claimed top speed of 174 mph is unchanged.

The M2 CS is also the first M2 model to get BMW’s Adaptive M suspension, which gives the driver three levels of adjustment (Comfort, Sport, Sport+) for the dampers. The level of steering assistance also changes with each mode. Conventional brakes are standard, but carbon-ceramic brakes are also available for drivers anticipating a lot of track time.

BMW also replaced some standard M2 parts with lighter carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) components. The M2 CS has a CFRP roof that removes weight from the highest point on the car, helping to reduce the center of gravity, according to BMW. the CFRP hood not only weighs half as much as the standard steel hood, BMW claims, but also has vents for engine cooling. The front splitter, rear spoiler, rear diffuser, and exterior mirrors are made from CFRP as well. The M2 CS also gets the CFRP front strut tower brace from the M2 Competition, which helps increase structural rigidity.

The interior gets a smattering of CFRP as well. The center console is made from the material, saving six pounds over the standard version, BMW claims. The inevitable Alcantara trim covers much of the interior, including the M Sport steering wheel. Designers don’t seem capable of doing a performance car interior without Alcantara.

The 2020 BMW M2 CS starts production in March 2020 and will be a one-year-only model. BMW won’t discuss pricing, but for reference, the current M2 Competition starts at $59,895. The M2 CS will debut at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show alongside the BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe, which Digital Trends has already driven a prototype of. While both models may have “2” in their names, the Gran Coupe is based on an unrelated front-wheel-drive platform.

Stephen Edelstein
Stephen is a freelance automotive journalist covering all things cars. He likes anything with four wheels, from classic cars…
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