2022 is going to be a busy year for BMW considering we already know the names of many high-performance vehicles that will debut. The M2, M4 CSL, XM, and iX M60 will all be introduced next year, but we're honestly more excited to see the first-ever M3 Touring in production form. The revamped 7 Series is due next year as well and will come along with a fully electric i7 that should also have an M60 derivative.

There might be even more to come in 2022 when the M division will celebrate its 50th anniversary. According to our pals at BMWBLOG, the "M car will be extremely limited in numbers and quite unique, both in design and pricing point as well." It will apparently be joined by "50 Jahre" special editions for the M3 and M4, but the vibe we're getting from the report is the mysterious machine won't be related to those cars.

Ok, so what could it be? Well, we wouldn't go as far as to say it will be a true spiritual successor to the mid-engined M1, but we also expect something a bit spicier than just another special edition. We've attached spy shots of an interesting 8 Series Coupe spotted earlier this year at the Nürburgring, which may or may not be related to the car BMWBLOG is talking about. The peculiar prototype had bloodshot headlights, a red-tinged grille, and vents built into the quarter windows.

It's unclear whether the odd prototype was a preview of a hotter 8er or a test mule for a different vehicle. For what it's worth, BMW has already ruled out an M8 CSL, so it can't be that. Here's hoping the M division will mark half a century of existence with something other than an SUV since some of the enthusiasts are already disappointed the first bespoke M car after the M1 is a high-riding model.

BMW has vowed to keep the inline-six and V8 engines alive at least until the end of the decade as the engineers are finding ways to make the company's largest combustion engines cleaner to meet increasingly tougher emissions regulations. That doesn't necessarily mean the mysterious M car coming in 2022 will have an ICE, but we honestly hope that it will.

Those tougher laws we mentioned have already killed the M760i and its V12, so we're keeping our fingers crossed that whatever BMW M is planning, it will feed on gasoline. Regardless of the shape it will take, expect a high price tag and low production numbers, plus retro badges as all M and M Sport Package models will wear in 2022.

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