Vermicious knids are huge dark egg-shaped beings that live on the planet Vermes 184,270,000,000 miles away from earth and for some reason, they are the first things that came to mind when I drove BMW’s new M2 rocket ship. It’s obviously not their shape that made me think of them, it’s the ‘fact’ that they travel at super speeds (they consider 1,000,000 miles per day casual exercise or commuting to work) and that the word Vermicious sounds to me like vicious – which is exactly how the M2 delivers its 272kW’s of power.
Under the bonnet of the new M2 coupe is a 3L TwinPower Turbo inline 6 cylinder petrol engine that spews out (in overboost) 500Nm of torque from as low as 1,500rpm. It boasts a 4.5 second 0-100 time and has a (limited) top speed of 250kph. As usual, the figures only tell some of the story – the M2 literally spews out its power from the moment you dab the accelerator and if you choose to be reckless and stamp down hard? Well ‘be prepared for the outcome’ is all I have to say.
I’d liken the sensation to massive understeer but it’s there from the get-go. The rear wheels savagely assert their power onto the front wheels and it feels outstanding; your heart is racing almost as fast as the speed you are going and I’m sure you’d hear the beat loudly in your ears if it wasn’t for the attention-getting roar that comes from the engine. The speed, motion, and sound all gather together like an awe-inspiring 3D movie; a movie that you’d want to see over and over again.
The M2 has it all going on in the looks department too. Un-missable massive angular air curtains take up the front two corners of the car underneath the angry looking headlights; with the BMW kidneys completing the visage. It has flared front wheel arches that would be impressive on most other cars but almost pale into insignificance when you take a look at the ones that cover the back rubber. The body lines and curvature ensure that you become transfixed on the M2’s back quarter, this dominant business end of the car makes way for a bulbous tail that anyone from the Kardashian family would be proud of. Twin exhausts add the final touches of power dressing but the M2 itself does ALL the talking.
The interior is as familiar a place as any other current BMW’s but with a racetrack feel and colour coded stitching. It has all the usual BMW electronics (including a decent stereo that I didn’t use) but it also has a Lap timer and a GoPro app that you can tie your camera into for fun times on the track.
It was my first time in a latest M series car and I have to tell you the 7 speed M DCT transmission had me flummoxed for a moment. The double clutch mechanics are an amazing work of genius once you’re off and moving but it has Auto/manual crossover characteristics that, like I said, took me a moment to get used to (you’ll understand when you get behind the wheel) – ‘Park’ had me beaten for a while too.
I couldn’t get to grips with Launch control either, I even referred to the manual (shame on me) but to no avail – I need some more time on this BMW if you’re listening. But I have to say that despite these few (driver) teething troubles this car is fast and rawkuss. Of course, it has the ability to drive sensibly and sort of dignified but really why would you? You want to race in this car and you want to have fun in this car and that’s what it delivers, and then some.
I’m sure that Roald Dahl wasn’t thinking about the BMW M2 when he came up with the Vermicious knids but as far as I am concerned the moniker fits. This car is a tarmac devouring alien that roars with all the power of a rocket at launch time. It’s perfectly balanced, thrilling to drive and will happily bite you back if you play too rough.
Oh and one small but necessary top tip, should you ever encounter a group of Vermicious knids be very careful, they are carnivores and consider humans foodstock; however they are show-offs and cannot resist shaping themselves to spell the word ‘Scram’ (the only word they know) before an attack – that my friends; is your window of opportunity to escape!