Yes, because of tightening emissions regulations.
A couple of weeks ago, German magazine Bimmer Today wrote about the M760i xDrive’s impending death in Europe, saying the V12-powered would be phased out later this fall. A new article published today by the same site claims the end is nigh on the Old Continent for another performance BMW, namely the M2.
Both are believed to be victims of stricter Euro emissions regulations, forcing many automakers to adjust their lineups in order to avoid having to pay huge fines. The nimble rear-wheel-drive coupe in its current Competition and CS flavors uses an S55 engine revealed in 2013, which according to our pals at BMWBLOG would be too costly to tweak and make it comply with the tougher rules. For the same reason, production of the S55-engined M4 Coupe and M4 Convertible ended recently for Euro markets.
Gallery: 2020 BMW M2 CS
While the M760i is unlikely to return, the M2 will be revived for the next generation due to arrive at some point in 2022. It’s said to get the newer S58 engine already installed in the X3 M and X4 M, with the M3 and M4 to receive it in the coming months as well. It is probably safe to assume it won’t get the full amount of power of its bigger brother as doing so would risk cannibalizing sales of the M4.
Meanwhile, the current M2 will soldier on in North America and other parts of the world where laws regarding emissions are not as strict... yet. It’s the same story with the M760i, which for the next-gen 7 Series will likely be indirectly replaced by a fully electric version already confirmed to be the most powerful of the bunch.
There’s still plenty of time to buy an M2 on Euro soil unless you’re willing to patiently wait for the next-gen car. Thankfully, it will stick to the rear-wheel-drive recipe and avoid going down the FWD route taken by the 2 Series Gran Coupe and the Active / Gran Tourer minivans. Rumor has it the S58 engine will be dialed to at least 420 horsepower and 406 pound-feet (550 Newton-meters) of torque. The car is set to grow in size and put on a few pounds, but performance should be similar compared to the current model.
While an increasing number of M cars are utilizing xDrive, the M2’s engine will allegedly send power only to the rear axle. Customers will get to pick from a six-speed manual gearbox or an eight-speed auto, with mild hybrid tech possibly set to arrive later in the car’s estimated seven-year life cycle.