AutoCar recently received some big news from BMW after speaking with BMW M’s chief, Frank van Meel.
According to their finding, the Bavarian automaker might be in the works with full-fledged M versions of the X3 and the X4. But further more, van Meel hinted that the M5 might also gain all-wheel drive as an option, which follows up to several rumors surfacing in the past.
Beginning with the X3 and the X4, the M version would most likely follow the way of their larger brethren, the X5 M and X6 M, which means more power, more performance, lots of chassis, suspension and steering tweaks, and more M badges than engine displacement in liters.
But for the more shocking news, van Meel did confirm that future M models will get optional all-wheel drive systems, though all of those equipped with the system will get a rear-wheel-biased setup. The all-wheel drive is there to improve traction while mitigating understeer. You can also say so-long steering feel while you’re at it as well.
And in another shocker, van Meel disclosed that the age of the manual transmission is coming to an end as sales are dropping, no longer justifying any reason to keep them around for the long term. That said, we can most likely expect future M cars to be all automatic.
For a slight redemption from the bad news, van Meel also said there won’t be any front-wheel drive M models, riding on the BMW’s new UKL1 platform, such as the new 1-Series.