Much like Porsche with its Cayman-911 syndrome, BMW wants to keep a distance between the new M2 and the existing M4, but AC Schnitzer doesn’t have those reservations.
At the Geneva Motor Show on March 1, AC Schnitzer will reveal its ACL2 Concept based on BMW’s M235i Coupe, but instead of the stock 326PS (322hp) N55 3.0-liter turbo’d straight-six, the tuner dumped a modified version of the M3 and M4’s S55 421PS (425hp) 3.0L turbo six producing 570PS (562hp) under its bonnet.
For of those of you keeping track, that’s 200PS (197hp) more than the new M2’s 370PS (365hp) inline-six turbo.
The Aachen-based engineers also placed the M235i donor car under a strict diet with the ACL2 Concept tipping the scales at 1,448kg (3,192 lbs), or 122kg (269 lbs) less than the M2 and 142kg (313 lbs) less than the M4. The result is an impressive 2.54 kg/PS, which is a better power-to-weight ratio than a Ferrari 458 Italia or Porsche 911 GT3 RS.
Fitted with a six-speed manual gearbox, the ACL2 needs 3.9 seconds to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62mph), which compares to the M2s 4.5sec (4.3sec with the DCT) and the M4’s 4.3 sec (4.1sec with the DCT).
AC Schnitzer upgraded the 2-Series’ chassis with the front and rear axles from the M4 together with a fully height-adjustable Clubsport suspension, support bearings and bodywork-stiffening M4 carbon strut braces, and carbon ceramic brake discs.
Being AC Schnitzer, the Germans made sure that the ACL2 won’t fly by unnoticed giving it a racing green paintjob and a wide-body makeover. It would have been cool if they had used E30-style boxed fenders or at least M2-style bloated fenders, but instead, they opted for a more Fast & Furious look with raw wheelarch extensions with air outlets that add 140mm (5.5 in.) in width to the car, joined by a fixed rear wing, and carbon fiber rear diffuser, vented hood, front canards, racing mirrors and front lip spoiler.
The car now rides on AC’s 20-inch forged alloys shod in 285/25 ZR 20 Michelin PSS tyres on the front and rear.
Inside, the Germans tossed out the rear seat bench and gave the ACL2 a pair of two-tone Carbon racing bucket seats in the front, a new and frankly, rather ugly looking steering wheel rim, along with aluminum pedals and gear shift knob, and new trimmings in green and carbon fibre.
For now, the ACL2 remains a conceptual study, but AC Schnitzer says that many of the conversions presented here are readily available in the original or in modified versions.