The cabin of the upcoming G80 BMW M3 has been spotted for the first time, ahead of its global debut later this year. While the bulk of the car’s exterior and interior remain camouflaged, a closer look at the gear shifter reveals a new electronic gear lever with an additional switch to toggle between the gearbox’s three settings (Drivelogic), much like that seen on the new M8 Competition.

While the full M treatment is not fitted here, it’s easy to imagine that the M3 will get a unique steering wheel with programmable red buttons, a red push-start button, the new M Mode which alters the car’s driver assistance systems and the information displayed on the screens, as well as more supportive M sport seats.

Apparently, the new M3 will be available in a number of offerings, including the possibility of a rear-biased all-wheel drive variant with the M xDrive system (already deployed in the M5 and M8). Expect the performance sedan to get larger wheels and brakes, along with the optional M carbon ceramic brakes.

At launch, the G80 M3 is expected to use the new S58 3.0 litre twin-turbo straight-six petrol engine, featuring the high-tech water injection system first seen in the existing M4 GTS. The same engine – 55 hp and 50 Nm more than the S55 3.0 litre engine – powers the newly-launched X3 M and X4 M. Output is said to be as high as 480 hp, although sources say a ‘milder’, stripped-out 460-hp variant could supplement the line-up.

For now, the most potent G20 3 Series is the M340i xDrive, packing a 3.0 litre turbo inline-six that makes 374 hp and 500 Nm of torque. It does the century sprint in 4.4 seconds. The four-pot 330i produces 258 hp and 400 Nm of torque, and does the 0-100 km/h in 5.8 seconds.