BMW's readying a pocket-sized M3 for those on a smaller budget: the BMW 1-Series M Coupe. While official information remains scarce on this 2011 pocket rocket, we've grabbed a few more pointers to its performance and stats.
Set to be launched in early 2011, the 1-series based M spells a return to more lightweight M cars after the X6 M and its ilk that strained relations with the most fervent M division fans.
What no M1?
For those wanting bragging rights of owning an ‘M1’, prepare to be disappointed. Because of the historical significance of the M1 name within the corridors of Munich, the new model will instead be called the BMW 1-series M Coupé. Which if you say it slowly, takes about the same as the 0-60mph time.
Expect it to use the same straight six turbo lump found in the Z4 35iS matched up to a six-speed manual, or optional seven-speed DCT twin-clutch 'box. The 1-series hotshot should zip past 60mph in just 4.6 seconds, according to our moles. Further pub ammo comes in the form of a top speed limited to 155mph, 370lb ft of torque and 335bhp.
To mark out this junior M3 from more humdrum Ones, there's a bespoke interior that includes the addition of bucket seats and new trim details. Outside, the 1-series has had the recommended M dose of protein to see its body blistered and swollen in all directions to accommodate the new 19in wheels and necessary cooling ducts.
Will it handle like a proper M car?
Wrapping these 19in rims are huge 265/35 profile tyres out back and 245/35s up front. Hiding behind the lightweight alloys is uprated suspension and larger, more powerful cross-drilled brakes.
Interested? Well the 1-series M Coupé is set to go on sale in the UK in June 2011 with an estimated price tag of around £40,000. Or around £13,000 less than an M3. Hmmm.