Skip to main content

2020 BMW M3 Pure to be manual, RWD

A couple of months ago, I posted about how the 2020 BMW M3 (code named G80) will bring more than 500 hp and AWD. At that point, I figured all hope was lost for a manual M3 or M4, despite an earlier report that BMW M is still committed to manuals. Thankfully, it looks like hope is fully restored or - better yet - replaced with full expectations of a manual, thanks to an interview by Car Magazine.

If you were waiting for a 500+ hp AWD beast, fear not. It is still coming. But BMW M boss Markus Flasch just confirmed to Car Magazine that an entry level version for the purists will bring lower horsepower, a manual stick shift, and RWD. They are code named M3 Pure or M4 Pure internally and will pack "only" 454 hp. According to Car Magazine, this is because BMW does not have a manual gear box that can handle the full output, but I'm sure it also has something to do with hierarchy. It will still come with an electronic limited slip differential like the current M cars.

The standard model will pack 473 hp and a full fat, Competition model will also be available later to go head to head with the AMG C63 S and will pack 503 hp to match the AMG. Both the standard and Competition models will come standard with an 8-speed automatic and no option of a manual. It looks like the dual clutch transmission in the current F80 M3 and F82 M4 won't make a return.

Both models will also do away with RWD. Markus said in the interview that BMW was able to put the same AWD system from the F90 M5 into the new M3. The 'Pure' models will come only as RWD and won't have the option of AWD. However, since BMW is using the same AWD system from the M5, that means that the AWD models will have a selectable RWD-mode that allows you to disconnect the front axle and send all the power to the rear axle alone. 

Said power will come from the new S58 3.0 litre twin-turbocharged straight six engine that BMW already puts in the brand new X3 M and X4 M. BMW says it is its most advanced straight six produced to date and will utilize a water injection system to cool "high combustion temperatures". It's not clear if it's an intercooler spray temperature like in the 911 (991.2) GT2 RS or a methanol mixture injection system to directly cool the charge air. Either way, it should result in more reliable horsepower on track regardless of heat, but you'll have to keep the tank filled. By the sound of things the 'Pure' and standard models will utilize more or less the same engine with different states of tune, but the Competition models will also get a higher compression ratio and unique intake manifold and exhaust.

The new M3 and M4 will be revealed in September at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show and, although prices are yet to be revealed, the standard model and Competition models should be expected to come in at a premium to the current models, if for nothing but the AWD system. The back-to-basics pure models, though... it may not be totally unreasonable to expect them to cost about the same or only slightly higher. Thankfully, we won't have to wait too long to find out.

Follow Rams Eye The Track Guy on Facebook and Instagram!


  1. This is fuckin great news. In a world where people look at a stick shift gearbox and ask in awe "Stick shift? OH what is that??" this is a 200 iq move by BMW no joke. I have driven manual boxes forever and can't get used to automatics no matter what. The fact that im also a racing driver doesn't help - I like to shift when I want, where I want and how I want.

    I've driven many cars with DCT gearboxes in semi-auto mode, and, while similar in terms of feel. are still no where compared to a true manual. Let's hope more manufacturers bring it back. Im looking at you Audi, Lamborghini, Ferrari, Mercedes, Ford, etc. Let's stop dumbing down stuff for once.


Post a Comment

Does An Aftermarket Grille Really Increase Airflow?
I put a Saleen S281 grille to the test to answer that question.

Stock Suspension S197 Mustang With Square 305/30/19's
What you need to fit a proper size square tire setup.

How Limited Slip Diffs Make You Faster on Track
What you need to know about how they put power down and pros and cons.

Can Telemetry Explain Schumacher's Talent?
A comparison between Schumacher's and then team mate Herbert's data.

Cayman GT4 Track Review
The first Cayman with proper (911-challenging) power.

Is an EcoBoost Mustang any good on Track?
Two days at the track in a Mustang short 4 cylinders.

2016 BMW M4 DCT Track Review
It's quick (properly quick). But is it fun?

Can a stock Golf Diesel handle a Track Day?
Not your every day track beater.

🔥 Most Visited This Week

GTR vs Evo X vs STI: which has the best AWD system?

A few weeks ago, I made a post explaining  mainstream AWD system types and how they compare , pros and cons, etc. including some simple diagrams to show where the power goes and how much. As promised, this post will focus on specific cars and what AWD systems they use, especially ones that that have more or less been defined by their AWD systems, and the best place to start may be with a bombshell; the Nissan GT-R. Nissan GT-R (R35) The GT-R has built a reputation around having monster traction and very approachable performance, thanks to its AWD system - Advanced Total Traction Engineering System for All-Terrain (ATTESA) - and what it can do for you. But the GT-R doesn't actually use the most mechanically sophisticated type of AWD systems discussed in the previous article, namely a "true" AWD with a centre differential. Instead, it uses a clutch pack to transfer power. RWD-based clutch-type AWD schematic - Rams Eye The Track Guy © The R32, R33, and R34 Sky

Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2's vs Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R's

I never thought I'd ever run Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2's on my 2012 Boss 302. The cost is astronomical and they are supposed to last the least of anything comparable. So how did I end up with (nearly) fresh Sport Cup 2's? A complete fluke. I came across a lightly used set with only a few hundred miles and no track time; 305/30/19 takeoffs from a GT Performance Pack Level 2 (GT PPL2). I knew my 71R's were getting very worn before the season started and likely wouldn't last the whole season, even this short one. The price was far better than a new set of RE-71R's, a little more than half, and local Time Attack rules (Canadian Automobile Sport Clubs) recently made 180 and 200 TW tires equivalent, meaning no PAX or PIP point penalty for going with 180 TW tire like the Pilot Sport Cup 2's. I have been very curious about how PSC2's compare to RE 71R's but I stayed away due to their being painfully expensive and, up to last year, their 180 TW rating would

Limited Slip Differential Types Compared

BMW M2 equipped with an eLSD - BMW © A few weeks ago, I posted about traditional clutch-type limited slip diffs (LSD's) and how they work. You can read about those in the previous post: How Limited Slip Diffs Make You Faster on Track . But as you might know or have learned from reading the article, they aren't without their faults, which means engineers are always working to get around those limitations. You may not be surprised to learn that something like the Ferrari 488 GTB doesn't use a traditional limited slip diff, but it's not limited to super cars, far from it. Cars like the Golf GTI, the Civic Type R, various Mustangs, Corvettes, and BMW M cars, and even the Lexus RC F and GS F, all avoid a traditional limited slip diff in favour of one of these technologies. To keep things simple, I'll focus on two wheel drive vehicles. The vast (vast) majority of principles apply to all and 4 wheel drive vehicles, but there are some subtle differences that I'll

Michelin PSS vs Firestone Indy 500 - Track Review

A couple of weeks ago, I posted my first impressions of Michelin's PSS vs Firestone Firehawk Indy 500 tires. I've run PSS's for several years on the Boss, but I'm trying the Indy 500's for the first time. In short, I was worried about the narrower tires (I was running 285/35/18 PSS but could only find the Indy 500 in 275/35/18) and tread squirm, but I was happy with them up to that point just driving on the street. I had the chance to drive on them for three track days now. So what were they like? After my first session, they made an impression that basically persisted for the rest of track sessions on them. Phenomenal, unmatched value. Now, if value is something that stands out above all else, it typically means the compromise between qualities you want and those you don't is less than ideal, but the value is attractive. This is no different. I'll start with the bad, which really boil down to two: ultimate grip and grip longevity. Grip is noticeably l