A brief history of the BMW M3
We've just driven the new BMW M3. A perfect time to look back on M Division's classic moniker...
Posted: 09 May 2014
BMW M3 Saloon/M4 Coupe: F80/F82
BMW ditched the E numbers for this new generation of M car - and indeed an iconic moniker too, because the M3 Coupe is no more. It's simple, really: the M3 badge will remain only on the saloon, while the M4 Coupe is the new, um, M3 Coupe. Geddit?
As well as dropping the E numbers, BMW also dropped quite a bit of the weight of the new M3/M4, too. Where the outgoing BMW M3 Coupe tipped the scales at a heady 1655kg, the new M4 is a comparatively featherweight 1500kg. OK, so the new M4 Convertible piles on at a significant 1750kg, but even that is 60kg lighter than the old M3 Convertible.
And out goes the V8 too, ushering in a revamped version of BMW's tried, tested and thrashed 3.0-litre twin-turbo 6cyl. That's right, the M3/M4 has been reunited with a straight-six engine, and it's a torque filled monster.
Absolutely power rises a bit to 431bhp (up from 414bhp), but it's the torques that have really taken a leap. The old V8 made 295lb ft. This new car makes a whopping 406lb ft, and as such will accelerate from 0-62mph in just 4.3s (or 4.1s with the optional dual-clutch automatic gearbox).
There is lots of carbon fibre. There's quite a lot of ‘face' and styling - much of it functional aero to aid downforce and handling - and there's even a ‘Smokey Burnout' function. The new M3 and M4 then, are hooligans.