The second generation of the BMW M2 will be produced exclusively at BMW Group Plant San Luis Potosí in Mexico. Opened in 2019 after ground was broken in 2016, the plant has quickly realized strong performance and currently produces the G20 3 Series sedan and the second-generation 2 Series coupe for global export. Next time you’re browsing inventory of either one of these models, take note of the VIN, which likely starts with the number three, indicating Mexico as the country of origin.
Production of the second-generation M2 at BMW Group Plant San Luis Potosí in Mexico is scheduled to begin before the end of 2022. In 2021, plant production volume rose 25% year-over-year, and this year, BMW plans to increase the staff with 800 additional employees while also initiating a second production shift. When production of what’s likely to be the G87 M2 begins later this year, the facility will join the elite rankings of other BMW factories that manufacture M models, including BMW Group Plants Munich, Dingolfing, and Spartanburg.
“We are very excited to be part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of M, now that our Mexican plant will build M vehicles for the whole world,” explained Harald Gottsche, president and CEO of BMW Group Plant San Luis Potosí. “By producing the second generation of the BMW M2 exclusively for the global market, the high capacity of human talent in San Luis Potosí is once again demonstrated and our commitment to the growth and development of the state is renewed.”
The second-generation M2 is fundamentally based on the recently introduced second-generation 2 Series coupe, which is currently offered as the 230i and M240i xDrive in the U.S. Both of those models are produced at BMW Group Plant San Luis Potosí. The 230i is powered by the second-most potent version of the BMW B48 turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine, which develops 255 horsepower from 5,000 to 6,500 rpm, and 295 pound-feet of torque from 1,550 to 4,400. The M240i xDrive uses the most powerful version of the BMW B58TU1 turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine, with 382 horsepower on tap from 5,000 to 6,500 rpm and 369 pound-feet of torque from 1,600 to 4,500. The F22 2 Series they replaced used lower-output versions of the same engines before production ended, but unlike the current G42, the first generation was offered with a manual transmission.
The G87 M2, as the second generation is likely to be internally designated, is one of the most exciting cars on the horizon for both BMW M and the entire BMW brand. The first generation of the M2 quickly became the best-selling M model thanks to exceptional driving dynamics, and the upcoming second generation is likely to preserve some of that magic with the availability of a manual transmission and rear-wheel-drive, but no form of electrification for the drivetrain. Speaking of the powertrain, the second-generation M2 is expected to use the S58 twin-turbocharged M inline six-cylinder engine currently found in the M3 and M4 along with the X3 and X4 M. The specific version of the S58 used in the M2 might come in a different state of tune with slightly lower output, however, as BMW likes to leave room for subsequent Competition and CS models down the road.
Additional specifications of the upcoming M2 include the presence of BMW iDrive 8, which is not offered on the current 2 Series coupe lineup. BMW recently teased us a bit more by sharing a few other angles of a G87 M2 prototype under the Mexican sun on Instagram. The prototype is wrapped in camouflage, but the classic characteristics of a modern M car are present, including flared fenders, aerodynamic bumpers with large air intakes, and quad exhaust pipes framed by a diffusor on the rear end. The hood also boasts a power dome, while the trunk lid wears a small lip spoiler, and the mirrors are the M aerodynamic design, which was just democratized to the M850i as part of the 8 Series LCI.
Scheduled to be unveiled later this year, the second-generation of the M2 will join the likes of other upcoming M models including the M3 Touring, a high-performance version of the M4 coupe, and the polarizing XM, the latter of which will be produced at BMW Group Plant Spartanburg in South Carolina. The model blitz is all part of BMW’s continued celebration of the 50th anniversary of the founding of BMW M, and so far this year, we’ve already seen the iX M60, X7 M60i, i7 M60, and the M760e xDrive unveiled.—Alex Tock
[Photos courtesy BMW AG.]