BMW’s name change of the iconic M3 to the M4 may draw howls of protests from Bimmerphiles, but look past the nomenclature and there’s lots to love about the M coupe, which leaked ahead of its official debut at Pebble Beach.
Although called a concept, the production version won’t change much visually when it debuts next year. Like the outgoing M3, the M4 sees subtle visual tweaks from the standard 4 Series, which include a power-domed hood, a boomerang fender vent (integrating more seamlessly with the character line), larger wheels, and a quad-exhaust system in the back.
What’s more compelling are the changes underneath the sheet metal. Downsizing from the sonorous V-8 that redlines at a stratospheric 8400 rpm, the engine in the M4 will be a turbocharged straight six, making an estimated 450 horsepower. And BMW finally reverses the trend of new M cars gaining weight, with the new M4 shedding a couple hundred pounds.
More details may be coming at the concept’s official unveiling tonight—meanwhile, click the gallery below for more images.