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Slip and Slide: Next BMW M3/M4 May Offer Manual RWD “Pure” Variant

While AWD is expected to be standard, all is not lost for the tail-happy among us.

BMW sometimes makes things hard on its fans. To wit, there’s the troubling news that the new Z4 will likely never arrive with a manual transmission, and the refreshed 7 Series possesses one of the most controversial BMW designs since former design chief Chris Bangle was in charge. But it’s time to cheer up, as the U.K.’s CAR has uplifting rumors surrounding the future BMW M3/M4.

More specifically, they’re rumors regarding the drivetrain configurations of Bimmer’s iconic sport sedan and its coupe sibling. The current-gen M5 launched exclusively with all-wheel-drive, and the upcoming G80 M3 and G82 M4 have been expected to follow suit in order to reach a wider customer base.

While CAR reports the M3/M4 will indeed arrive with driven front wheels, a special rear-wheel-drive, manual-transmission edition tentatively called the M3/M4 “Pure” will also be available. If you’re one of the row-your-own crew, these will be the variants to hold out for, as the Pure cars are said to be the only way to get a manual. With less luxury content, they’re also rumored to be a bit cheaper than the AWD versions, which is only icing at this point.

On a bit of a sour note, the Pure will be down on power when compared to the mainstream AWD variants, as BMW admits it does not have a manual transmission that can safely handle more than 480 lb-ft of torque. Power will come from a 3.0-liter twin-turbo inline-six with water injection lifted from the current M4 GTS, with the report putting output at 454 horsepower in the Pure and 474 horses in the regular car. The new M3/M4 should also once again spawn the usual higher-performance special editions, including CS and CSL trims that likely will bring more power, more capable dynamics, and more visual drama.

The new Bimmers are expected to break cover at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show in September.

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2020 BMW M4

MSRP $77,650 Base Convertible