We can't stress this enough – it will remain rear-wheel drive.

The next-generation BMW 2 Series won’t debut until later in 2021, but we’ve already seen quite a few spy shots. Some of the prototypes had plenty of camouflage while others posed for the camera without any makeup, revealing a significant departure in terms of design compared to the current model. Today, we’re able to share the first spy video of the sports coupe during a recent workout at the Nürburgring gym.

As it was the case with the most recent batch of spy images, we’re dealing with an M Performance version likely called the “M240i.” There are some reports suggesting BMW will change the version’s moniker to “M245i,” possibly to emphasize a power increase, but that remains to be seen. Meanwhile, we can now check out a prototype at full tilt around the Nordschleife, torturing its tires in the process.

Gallery: New BMW 2 Series Coupe spy photos

 

While the sense of speed is not necessarily noticeable in the spy video, the loud screeching noise denotes the test driver was giving it the proverbial beans. The fact BMW added a roll cage in the back is another clue the 2 Series prototype was at the Green Hell that day for some proper high-speed testing. The car looks as nimble and as agile as a compact rear-wheel-drive coupe should be in an automotive world of gradually heavier performance cars that feel more and more artificial.

Although only the roof is exposed, we can easily see the hood bulge and trunk lid spoiler beneath the swirly camouflage, while those angular exhaust finishes are likely going to be an M Performance-only affair. The lesser versions will have a pair of round tips and the range-topping M2 will feature an extra pair.

The 2 Series prototype must’ve had a track-focused suspension setup as it sat close to the road with very little room left in the wheelhouse. The orange side markers on the front bumper could be a hint BMW was testing the US-spec version, while the silver mirror caps further suggest this was the M Performance derivative.

The wraps should come off in 2021 with the M240i/M245i as the headliner, with the M2 to arrive later this decade.