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)