Best of the Best 2016: Wheels | Coupes: BMW M2

The M2 is the antithesis of most modern luxury cars—and therein lies its appeal. It’s small and has minimal driver-assistance technology, and it’s one of the few cars still available with a 6-speed manual gearbox (although the optional 7-speed dual clutch is faster). The M2’s compact size is close to that of the early M3 models, which are venerated by car enthusiasts. Straightforward packaging, such as a single, fixed aluminum suspension, and minimal options keep things simple. At 3,505 pounds, the car isn’t svelte, but the 3-liter, turbocharged inline 6 is robust enough to propel the M2 out of the corners with ease.

  • The M2 is a successor of sorts to the 1M, a limited-series sports coupe that BMW produced in 2011 and 2012.

  • With the overboost feature, the engine can churn out an extra 26 ft lbs of torque between 1,450 and 4,750 rpm.

  • The rev-matching feature on the manual transmission eliminates the need for heel-toe action when shifting gears. 

BMW, bmwusa.com (starting at $51,700)

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