- bmw's next m4 appears in this photo, apparently leaked, published on reddit.
- the sportiest version of bmw's upcoming 4-series features a large vertical grille that is sure to cause discussions among brand aficionados.
- the technology will be less controversial: it keeps a turbocharged straight-six.
just in case you got worked up about the provocative vertical grille on the new bmw 4-series, the bavarians have another one in store for you: here's the next-generation m4, caught virtually without disguise at what must be a facility belonging to bmw or one of its suppliers.
like the 4-series, and to no one's surprise, the m4 is fitted with a vertical grille as well, but it is not the same grille. on the high-performance derivative, it features a slightly different contour and it is wider and taller in order to comply with the engine's voracious appetite for fresh air.
the entire front fascia is wider and lower, and the wider body up front and in the rear is clearly visible. the m4, of course, gets wider side sills and m-specific rearview mirrors, too. moreover, there is a more aggressive hood contour than on the regular 4-series, even though the massive bulge of the current m4 disappears.
what's not visible on this shot, which first appeared on reddit, is the m4's aggressive rear end, accentuated with a spoiler lip and four exhaust tips. the m4 will be powered by a comprehensively upgraded 3.0-liter straight-six, to be offered in base and competition versions with power hovering just below and above the 500-horsepower mark. we suspect that a rear-biased all-wheel-drive system is standard, although a rear-wheel drive version is still possible.
even though the new model is longer, wider, and slightly taller than the outgoing car, it may shed a few pounds, thanks to its redesigned platform. but all-wheel drive would likely push weight above the current mark.
enthusiasts will be relieved to learn that the m4 will still be offered with a six-speed manual transmission. the dual-clutch automatic will likely make way for a zf-sourced eight-speed torque-converter-type automatic. and while the m4 will stick to bmw's voluntary 155-mph governor, it will be possible to raise it to at least 174 mph. the sprint from zero to 60 mph will take less than four seconds.
inside, the m4 gets specific performance seats and an enhanced cockpit with unique graphics and performance functionalities. pricing is yet unknown; the current model begins just above $70,000, and given its slightly bigger size and its power boost, the new model could add a few thousand.
when the m4 coupe is officially shown in early fall, it will be flanked by the next-gen m3. and we hear the m3 will feature the same aggressive nose that adorns the new m4. the m4 cabriolet, with a soft top, and the hatchback m4 gran coupe will follow later.