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First look at next-generation 2012 BMW M6

BMW releases photos and details before official launch at Geneva auto show

Published: February 29, 2012, 5:00 PM

Geneva -BMW has already served notice of its plans to reveal a production version of the 6-Series Gran Coupe (a coupe-like four-door-sedan) at the Geneva Motor Show in March. Now comes word that the M6 coupe and convertible will make their debuts there as well.

Like all models that wear the M-badge, their priority is performance. It starts under the hood with a 4.4-litre twin-turbo V-8 engine rated at 560 horsepower over a range from 5,750-to-7,000 rpm and 500 lb-ft of torque over an even broader plateau, from 1,500-to-5,750 rpm.

Among other things, the new engine introduces BMW’s proven Valvetronic variable valve-control system to the M lineup – effectively providing 16 individual throttles. While its output has increased about 10% and maximum torque is up by more than 30%, the new M6s consume approximately 30% less fuel than their predecessors.

Power is delivered to the rear wheels via a seven-speed M-DCT dual-clutch transmission and an Active M Differential – a multi-plate limited-slip unit that is programmed to optimize traction, stability and sporting character.

BMW claims 0-100 km/h acceleration in 4.2 seconds for the M6 Coupe and 4.3 for the Convertible, with a limited top speed in either case of 250 km/h.

The M6 continues the M-tradition of engineering a chassis that is "faster than the engine," the company says. As with every BMW M-car, engineers fine-tuned it during extensive testing on the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit.

M-specific components include an integral rear-axle sub-frame that is rigidly bolted to the body, reinforced chassis mountings at the front and rear axles, specially- tuned axle kinematics and newly developed forged aluminum suspension components.

Standard Dynamic Damper Control (DDC) uses electro-hydraulic damping force adjustment to provide a set-up suited to the driving situation and the wishes of the driver.

The new M6 also uses BMW’s most advanced Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) and Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), which includes Cornering Brake Control (CBC), Dynamic Brake Control (DBC), Brake Assistant, brake fade compensation, a Brake Drying function and Start-off Assistant.

Naturally, the M6s are fitted with a high-performance braking system with six-piston calipers and vented/cross-drilled rotors – 400 mm (15.7 inches) at the front and 396 mm (15.6 inches ) at the rear. For the first time on any BMW M-car, carbon-ceramic brakes will be an option (in conjunction with 20-inch M light-alloy wheels as of July 2012 production).

The standard M6 wheel and tire combination is a 19 inch M specific light-alloy wheels fitted with 265/40 R19 ultra-high performance summer tires in the front and 295/35 R 19 tires at the rear. 20 inch forged M light-alloy wheels can be ordered as an option.