The BMW iM2 is rumored to be a ridiculously powerful hypercar, and with 1,300 horsepower it could trounce the upcoming Tesla Roadster but falls short of the Lotus Evija.
The news comes from an unnamed source from subscription-only publication Car Magazine (opens in new tab), as reported by Car Advice (opens in new tab). The BMW iM2 will be made to celebrate the 50th anniversary of BMW’s M division. The electric motors will be housed in a model based on the 2021 BMW M2 CS.
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The rumored 1,000 kW car, which translates to 1,300 horsepower, absolutely demolishes the old Tesla Roadster, which, according to Cnet (opens in new tab), sits at 215 kW, or 288 horsepower. We don't know what the horsepower is on the upcoming Tesla Roadster, however. But with a 0-60 time of 1.9 seconds, we do know it's going to be quick off the line.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of reasons to believe this claim is all just a case of wishful thinking. According to Car Magazine, an unnamed source, reportedly with insider information, leaked that BMW is working on a vehicle internally codenamed “Project Katharina.” It will go on to be named the iM2. As its name implies, it will be an electric high-performance car based on the upcoming next-generation 2 Series.
The commemorative model will have four electric motors and one whole megawatt of power. That's roughly 1,341 horsepower. Word is that’s enough to rocket the iM2 to 62 mph (100 kph) in approximately 2.5 seconds and break the tires loose in a straight line on a dry road at speeds up to 75 mph (120 kph). On top of that, the iM2 can supposedly lap the Nurburgring Nordschleife in six minutes and 50 seconds.
Given the stats and its specificity, it’s tempting to believe this rumor is true. According to BMW, “BMW M GmbH was founded in 1972 as a business unit for the sporty products of the BMW brand.” It makes total sense that the German automaker would want to create a bonkers performance model to commemorate reaching the 50-year mark, perhaps even an all-electric one that would serve as a signal of the sub-brand’s future. And BMW has been testing development mules of the next 2 Series. In fact, one model was spotted (opens in new tab) in March and had modifications that indicated it was probably packing electric propulsion.
On the other hand, there’s a lot that causes us to believe this is all just wishful thinking. For starters, Project Katharina has not been green-lit for production. Enthusiast site BMW Blog (opens in new tab) even shot the idea down. Then there’s those wonderful stats. While exciting, it might be beyond the realm of believability. We’re not talking about a new Koenigsegg, after all. BMW’s most powerful production car ever, the BMW M5 CS, produces 627 horsepower. Granted, that’s a very different machine with a completely different powertrain, but it’s too far a leap to believe BMW will more than double that figure in a year, especially in such a small vehicle.
This doesn’t mean that BMW will pass up the chance to celebrate its M division’s 50 years of making the ultimate driving machines more ultimate. It’ll certainly create something befitting such a milestone, but it probably won’t be as over-the-top powerful as the rumored iM2.