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      05-14-2019, 10:52 PM   #1
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No Front-Wheel Drive M-Cars... ever, says BMW M Boss

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Head of BMW M Rebukes the Idea of Front-Wheel Drive M-Cars
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The Head of BMW M, Markus Flasch, has told journalists last week during a telephone conference that there are no plans for BMW's M division to offer front-wheel drive models.

There is no front-wheel drive M car and [that] will stay this way,” Flasch declared.

While the 1 Series and X2 have adopted transverse layouts with the M Performance Automobile variants (M135i and X2 M35i, respectively) offering more performance-orientation and all-wheel drive, the portfolio stops at those M Performance offerings, as BMW M have no plans to create full-fledged M Models out of the two platforms.

“At the moment we have no plans to do high-performance versions [of 1 Series or X2],” Flasch explained.

“We believe that the M Performance cars have enough power and enough performance. And the ratio of what we would have to put in, into developing high-performance cars in these segments, to the result that we could achieve does not really make sense at the present moment.”



On the topic of small rear-wheel drive models, Flasch mentions that he is "confident" that the M2 successor by virtue, will cater to existing M140i drivers.
It is implied through this statement, that Flasch is confirming the M2 will remain rear-wheel drive, while not adopting the transverse architecture of the 1 Series platform.



BMW M's current customer portfolio represents a diverse mix of driving preferences and styles.
As far as powertrains go, Flasch mentions the differing preferences between an M5 driver and an M3 driver, for example.
It's hard to ignore demand for all-wheel drive in larger M-cars, such as the M5 and M SAVs/SACs, but there’s also a place for rear-wheel drive in smaller M-cars like the M2.

“We also know that on the M5, the current model with the switchable [drive], people hardly ever switch off the all-wheel drive,” Flasch explains.

M5 owners are generally long-term M customers, who have matured from the dynamic younger years of track driving and drifting.

But M3 buyers, however, are generally more likely to be into that type of driving, Flasch indicated.
Especially if it’s a customer’s first M-car, an M3 may spend its time in the garage on the weekdays, only to be taken out on more special occasions, and provided the weather is optimal for such occasions.
For those customer types, all-wheel drive is not essential.

“Rear-wheel drive makes more sense for these cars because they’re taken out in good weather for special occasions,” says Flasch.



Naturally, this goes into a conversation about the upcoming M3, which is rumored to be offered with M xDrive (all-wheel drive) a la F90 M5.
While Flasch has driven the upcoming G80 M3 in both RWD and AWD configurations during testing, he stops short of confirming that both drivetrain will be made available for sale.

“I can’t confirm it [RWD and AWD M3], but I’ve driven cars,” Flasch admits.

“We were able to take over the entire drivetrain concept that we offer in the M5, and we are able to do rear-wheel drive version as well, plus manual transmission."

“I won’t disclose today how we configure those opportunities, but we can do whatever the markets globally demand."

“We got it. We can’t confirm that we’ll bring it, but we got it.”


It seems that while both versions are being developed and tested, whether they both make it to production will depend on whether or not the project managers and other executives within BMW can find profitability and demand within the scope of sales and production.



Flasch also revealed a few other details of interest to BMW M enthusiasts, including mentioning a further distancing of the M-cars from M Performance models in the future, with design features that will be more radical.

Additionally, it was reaffirmed that the "GTS" moniker seen on the E92 M3 GTS and F82 M4 GTS will be retired.
M-models of that caliber will be badged CS and even CSL in the future.


Source: motoring.com


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      05-15-2019, 12:03 AM   #2
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I’ll take it with a grain of salt. Didn’t the head of M in the past also say the same thing about never having an AWD M3?

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      05-15-2019, 12:22 AM   #3
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then we ll see a FWD in 3-5 years.. Porsche's CEO said no diesel in our models less than 2 years time Porsche imported VW diesel to Panamera..
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      05-15-2019, 11:15 AM   #4
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Riiiiight
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      05-15-2019, 11:28 AM   #5
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I believe him. There is absolutely no reason for FWD high performance BMWs when their small vehicle architecture supports AWD. And, at least based on the quotes taken from this particular interview, Flasch did not rule out the latter configuration.

That being said, I think the ship has essentially sailed on this. By the time BMW M got their house in order and developed a worthy "S48" (400hp is the price for entry in the segment) and a chassis that was matched to it, the momentum will likely have shifted to dedicated rear-motor, RWD BEV architectures for small, premium performance cars.

For example, it is all but certain that we will see VAG produce MEB-based performance offerings from Audi and perhaps Porsche as well by 2030. BMW would probably not have their hypothetical FAAR-based ICE M vehicle ready until, say 2025. It doesn't make sense to go through the exercise for a one-generation-and-done product. Instead, they should (and likely will) start readying a small premium RWD BEV lineup, including high performance variants, possibly in partnership with Mercedes, for release second half of next decade.
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      05-15-2019, 01:09 PM   #6
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- M cars now have awd (after years of BMW criticizing audi for awd). It started with the 3 series xi cars and now its in the M5 and next M3

- M cars are now turbo. they introduced it in the 06-07 335i to lessen the shock and now its in every M car.

- M cars were all manual, then dct, and now they are moving to a slushbox ZF8.

No reason to believe we won't see a FWD M2 in the future. FWD cars are cheaper to make and then they can just slap an electric motor at the back to say its awd in the brochure.
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      05-15-2019, 01:48 PM   #7
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I doubt they would do FWD when it is so easy to do AWD and that the current FWD architecture is designed to be AWD - probably for the mini countryman initially but now of course the X2 M35i and any other performance FWD chassis.

I do wonder about electric at one end only though. I think that I'd prefer an electric xdrive system with an i3 or i8 motor on the front axle plus the DCT for the rear instead of the current xdrive system in the F90. There is no reason at all that the axles need to be linked when you have batteries and electric motors.
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      05-17-2019, 06:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Humdizzle View Post
- M cars were all manual, then dct, and now they are moving to a slushbox ZF8.
A slush box is in a first gen Smart. A modern ZF is anything but.
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      05-17-2019, 08:40 PM   #9
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Bet they would have said the same thing about AWD in the 90s. Ever statements are never statements.
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      05-18-2019, 09:00 AM   #10
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Watevs...i don’t believe him. BMW simply cannot help itself. New series, M and M perf variants...they cannot stop themselves from adding more letter and number combinations to their trunklids.
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      05-24-2019, 08:44 AM   #11
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I remember when the M boss said there would never be M SUVs
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      05-24-2019, 01:45 PM   #12
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No fwd M car, but you can get a fwd 'N' car developed by a former M division employee.
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      05-24-2019, 03:23 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Obioban View Post
I remember when the M boss said there would never be M SUVs
AND never be a M car with a turbo(s).
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      05-24-2019, 03:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dackelone View Post
AND never be a M car with a turbo(s).
Can't wait to preorder my 2024 electric turbo fwd X5M
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