BMW fans with a penchant for go-fast M products may be shocked to hear that the iconic performance division is set to adopt a decidedly green-tint thanks to the addition of hybrid assistance.
The vice president of BMW M, Dirk Hacker, confirmed the move with the UK’s Autocar, though at this stage was adamant that the program was only in the very early stages of development.
M aficionados that fear a softer, less focussed range of products can take heart however, with Hacker stressing that along with improvements to emissions performance, hybrid systems for M cars would also be developed with performance in mind.
“Adding mass to performance cars is never ideal,” Hacker explained. “But if we can use electrification to install more performance, then we start to have the answers.”
“That might be more speed, or it might be the ability for a car to be driven on electric power in a city.”
Hacker also pointed out that advancements through rapidly evolving battery and electric motor technology opened the door to even better solutions for M products, however internal combustion engines would remain at the heart of the company's products for as long as legislation would allow.
A move to electric assistance would be the latest in a long-line of changes impacting M models.
The division, once famed for high-revving naturally aspirated engines and rear wheel drive dynamics has, over time added turbocharging, all wheel drive, and even SUVs to its range and while purists may baulk at the changes, BMW’s sale figures prove that the changes have done no harm.
No timeline has been given for the introduction of hybrid M cars, but with governments around the world creating stricter emissions regulations a performance hybrid system offers BMW an opportunity to keep both legislators and consumers happy.