Meanwhile, BMW confirms that the upcoming M2 will be the last ‘M-car’ to use a pure internal-combustion engine

The upcoming M2's angry-looking rear end...

The upcoming M2’s angry-looking rear end…

The upcoming BMW M2 is undoubtedly one of the most highly anticipated cars of the year. We’ve seen the teasers, heard the rumours, analysed the leaked spyshots and waited patiently to get our first look at the upcoming German sports car, and finally, thanks to a recent leak, we have a glimpse of the forthcoming M2s aggressive rear end.

The leaked image shows off the rear of what appears to be a Yas Marina Blue coloured M2 in a darkened studio. The picture suggests that the upcoming car will adopt the rear lights from the standard 2 Series but gain beefier rear arches and a generally more muscular and aggressive body style.

Expect an even beefier version of the current M240i...

Expect an even beefier version of the current M240i…

Standout features include BMW M’s iconic quad-exit exhaust tips, an aggressive rear diffuser, two vertical indents for the rear reflectors and a duck-tail rear wing. The car’s alloy wheels appear to be the forged ‘1000 M’ design units we’ve already seen offered on the current M3 and M4. This is our best look at the production-ready M2 yet.

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However, it’s not all good news, as the leaked image coincides with some bad news for ICE purists. CEO of BMW’s M division, Frank van Meel, recently confirmed that the upcoming BMW M2 would be the last M car to use a pure internal combustion engine.

BMW's S58 engine from the BMW M3 Competition could make its way into the upcoming M2

BMW’s S58 engine from the BMW M3 Competition could make its way into the upcoming M2

“We will see increasing electrification in other vehicles, of course in different forms, starting with the 48-volt electrical system and plug-in hybrids to fully electric drives. Seen in this way, the M2 will be the last M with a pure combustion engine drive and also without electrification scope such as a 48-volt on-board network” van Meel told Germany’s Bimmer Today, .

The upcoming M2 is expected to use a detuned version of the ‘S58’ engine found in the X3 M, X4 M, M3 and M4 models. That power unit puts out a potent 503bhp in the current M3 Competition, while the outgoing BMW M2 Competition produces 404bhp from its twin-turbocharged inline-six ‘S55’ unit. The current special-edition M2 CS puts out 444bhp with the help of some performance upgrades, so don’t be surprised if the upcoming M2 is in this ballpark in terms of power.

The next generation M2 could be more powerful than the current BMW M2 CS

The next generation M2 could be more powerful than the current BMW M2 CS

If van Meel’s statement is anything to go by, the upcoming M2 could be one of the last great BMW M cars, and you might want to contact your local BMW dealership pretty quickly if an electrified M model doesn’t float your boat. Lucky buyers can specify the upcoming M2 with a six-speed manual gearbox, so it has all the makings for a proper enthusiast driving machine – a dying breed in today’s world.

Previously, we caught some spy shots of the upcoming BMW M2 in camouflaged guise undergoing cold-weather testing. The prototype showed the new car’s bigger brakes and relatively modest kidney grilles. Here’s hoping the new M2 doesn’t take too much inspiration from the wide-nostrils on the current M3 and M4 at the front end.