BMW M3 Coupe, This Is Your Life
BMW M3 Coupe: E92
A V8? In a production M3? Yes, and yes. Here was the final M3 Coupe, sporting a 4.0-litre eight-cylinder engine producing 420bhp and 400Nm of torque, enabling a 0-100kph time of 4.8 seconds. It also revved to 8,400rpm and shrieked noises that could make a grown man weep.
OK, so it's only one-tenth of a second quicker to 100kph than the old CSL, but that's because - despite BMW's talk of a lightweight chassis - this new V8 was a bit of a porker, weighing in at 1655kg. Still, it did have a cool carbon fibre roof, and the chassis was a fine thing. A double-strut setup up front, with a five-link rear axle, all-round vented discs, a variable M differential and many driver aids. It's a good ‘un, this M3.
A few special editions popped up in this E92 guise too: there was the M3 DTM Champion Edition, limited to just 54 models (one for each of BMW's DTM race victories), the really rather lovely M3 GT2 Art Car created by Jeff Koons, and of course, the bewinged, bombastic and lightly brutal 450bhp M3 GTS. When we got our fists of ham around it, we found that BMW had well and truly tangoed the M3. In a good way, of course. At last count, BMW rolled out more than 40,000 E92 V8 Coupes; a far cry from the 17k of the original.
Naturally, all good things come to an end, and the bright orange coupe we showed you last week is the very last two-door 3 series to be badged ‘M3'. Next year, we'll get the new M4, which BMW told TG will be a lightweight, turbocharged road-racer. And we're very much looking forward to it...
(Words: Vijay Pattni, Photography: BMW)