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BMW 3-Series

BMW 3-Series

  The BMW 3-Series began production back in 1975 and is one of the German automaker's luxury sedans. The 2012 model year will mark the 3-Series' sixth generation since its birth and will incorporate all of the current versions for the luxury car: 2-door coupe and convertible, 4-door saloon, 5-door touring, and 5 door liftback. The new 3-series is expected to be powered with new aluminum four-cylinder gasoline engines ranging from 135 to 220 horsepower. The current model is powered by a choice of four different engine. The 3.0L I-6 produces 230hp and 200 lb-ft of torque, while the 3.0L twin turbo diesel gets 265hp and 425lb-ft of torque. Another option is the 3.0L twin turbo I-6 getting 300hp and 300 lb-ft of torque, and the final engine option is a 4.0L V8 producing 414hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Engines can be mated to a six-speed manual transmission or a six- or seven-speed automatic.

We often find ourselves in that position where initial thrills eventually lead to realizing that our enjoyment came with a price.

For drivers of forced induction BMW M3s , that realization may have presented itself when they realized that while powerful in its own right, they would need to ring up the revolutions in order to achieve the kind of throaty roar they’re looking for. Comes with a price, right?

VF Engineering has the answer, thanks to their new VF540 Streetsport Supercharger. Taking in a few components from the Vortech V3si supercharger, particularly the V3 blower that drives the supercharger at a much lower rpm. From there, VF Engineering also installed an ECU upgrade, improving the M3’s throttle response while also using a HEX Flash system that allows for remote tuning and functions as a diagnostic cable that can clear off engine codes.

With all these modifications in tow, VF Engineering turned a powerful-at-a-cost M3 and its 420-horsepower and 295 lb/ft of torque output into one that delivers 540 horsepower and 370 lb/ft of torque.

The V540 Streetsport package retails for a reasonable price of $8,295. Should you be interested in something a little more powerful, you can avail the VF620 program - 624 horses and 400 lb/ft of torque numbers - for $13,495 or go for the top-of-the-shelf VF650 program - 650 horsepower and 420 lb/ft of torque - that comes with a price of $16,495.

We’re sure it will be worth every penny.

After providing an extensive tuning package for the 3-Series sedan , AC Schnitzer has moved on to its station wagon sibling to provide similar upgrades. Their new package for the BMW 3-Series Touring improves upon the exterior and interior look of the vehicle, as well as its power output.

The exterior upgrades include a new front spoiler, a chrome front grille, a rear roof spoiler, and a rear skirt. There is also a wide variety of wheels to choose from, ranging from 18" to 20" and different designs and colors. The interior combines aluminum elements with a very cool Black Line package.

The full line of engines for the 3-Series Touring was updated, providing an increase minimum of 28 HP. The 318d now delivers 171 HP, up from 143 HP; the 320d produces 218 HP, up from 184 HP; the 328i delivers 294 HP, up from 245; and the 335i pushes 360 HP, up from 306 HP. These updates were achieved with the addition of a sports rear silencer and a new exhaust system. There is also a new suspension spring kit combined with a lower suspension to bring the car closer to the ground by 25 mm.

BMW will be trooping to the 2012 Paris Motor Show with a presentation of their new add-on toys that are part of the M Performance Accessories. Comprised mostly of aesthetic and power kits, the accessories cover a whole range of BMW models, including the 1-Series hatch , the 3-Series Touring , and models that feature the automaker’s 2.0-liter four-cylinder diesel engine.

The accessories kit comprises of various new components, including carbon finished exterior mirror caps, a choice of new wheels, diffuser inserts for the rear apron, and side sill foliations. The 1-Series 3-door hatchback and 3-Series Touring models also get a slew of new goodies in the suspension, drive, and aerodynamics departments.

As far as performance upgrades are concerned, the M Performance Accessories come with plenty of options for the 120d , the 320d , and the 520d . Likewise, the automaker’s aforementioned 2.0-liter diesel engine also gets a power upgrade from the standard 181 horsepower and 197 lb/ft of torque all the way up to 197 horsepower and 310 lb/ft of torque.

The official debut of the new generation BMW M3 is still a few months away so, until then, all we can do is enjoy all of the spy shots and videos we can find. This latest video is a three minute compilation of the M3 in various settings performing different maneuvers and driving actions on and around the Nurburgring race track.

The next BMW M3 will be powered by an inline 6-cylinder engine that will deliver about 450 HP and will be mated to both a DCT and manual transmission (both versions have been spotted testing). The engine will feature a strengthened aluminum block with a heavily modified cylinder head that will help it deliver the best-in class fuel economy.

The new BMW M3 will be making its official debut in late 2013 or early 2014, but a concept version will arrive at an earlier date.

Source: f30post

BMW USA is continuing to expand its M3 special edition line-up with a new M3 Lime Park Edition Coupe. The new model was built as tribute to the historic Lime Rock Park racing circuit located in northwestern Connecticut and, as Skip Barber describes it, is "a classic car for a classic track." This new model is also a great way to send off the current M3 , in preparation for the future generation .

The BMW M3 Lime Rock Park Edition Coupe will be offered in a very cool Fire Orange exterior paint and comes standard with the Competition package, which includes 19" Style 359M silver wheels. The exterior package comes equipped with carbon fiber front chin splitters, a carbon fiber rear deck spoiler, a carbon fiber roof panel and a lightweight inconel-titanium exhaust muffler. For the interior, BMW is offering Anthracite and black cloth manual-adjustment seats with Nappa Leather trim, an Anthracite Alcantara steering wheel with flat-bottom design and a blue index stripe, and carbon leather trim.

The BMW M3 Lime Rock Park Edition Coupe will be limited to only 200 units and will go on sale in September 2012 at a starting price of $70,995 including $895 Destination and Handling. The company only plans to build 25 units a week, meaning that in two months, the production for this limited edition will be over.

UPDATE 09/14/2012: BMW has unveiled a new video featuring the M3 Coupe Lime Rock Park Edition driven at... Lime Rock track. Enjoy!

Hit the jump for a list of optional equipment.

Usually a photo shoot implies the following: you take the car and shoot some pictures in the studio, and then comes the magic. By "magic," we mean Photoshop. For each picture taken in the studio, a very talented man will be behind the computer providing a different background.

This time, however, BMW decided it was time to do things differently. The company took the BMW M3 GT2 Art Car to a very cool location: on the famous Pulpit Rock (or Preikestolen), Norway. The images taken are part of a seven art car exhibition at the Stavanger Museum close to the actual shoot location.

The BMW M3 GT2 Art Car was designed by Jeff Koons who put together images of race cars, related graphics, vibrant colors, speed, and explosions. What he ended up with was a design that was meant to display power, motion, and bursting energy.

We are all waiting for the new generation BMW M3 to be launched onto the market sometime in 2013, but the long wait is making us weary and the testing sessions are getting too few and far between for our liking. Luckily, we found this video of the upcoming model as it accelerated out of the Karussell on the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

The future BMW M3 will drop the current 420 HP engine and will replace it with a new twin-turbo 3.0 liter straight-six engine. The engine will take the output up to impressive 450 HP. This video provides us with the chance to the amazing sounds of the future turbocharged inline six-cylinder motor of the upcoming M3.

The new BMW M3 will be a 2013 model year car in Europe, but will be labelled as a 2014 car for the North American market.

While most people are busy speculating as to whether or not the new generation BMW M3 will have two or three turbos to boost its six-cylinder engine, G-Power is skipping the whole standard nonsense by applying a boost of their own to a customer’s E92 M3 .

The modifications done on the engine included the addition of a custom crankshaft and pistons from Mahle to increase the engine’s displacement from 4.0 liters to 4.6. A SK III ASA T1-723 supercharger kit, combined with a carbon fiber air box and titanium exhaust system, were installed to increase the engine’s output to an amazing 720 HP. As a result, the car goes from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds and can hit a top speed of 205 mph. Certainly not your average Bimmer.

G-Power proceeded to make the car look the part of a speed demon by adding a lower front spoiler, a new engine bonnet, and a new boot lid all made from carbon fiber. The final additions were a new set of 20" Silverstone Diamond alloy wheels and a Clubsport adjustable coilover kit.

If you happen to own a non-M3 E46 3-Series , but want the look of the M3 , Prior design has come up with an M3 styling kit that may suit you.

Starting up front, Prior Design eliminates the boring E46’s front bumper and replaces it with a unit that boasts a wide mouth and two side air intakes. The mouth’s outline is rather thin, keeping the drag to a minimum, and it is high enough off of the ground to avoid scraping.

For the sides of your awaiting 3-Series, Prior includes a set of side skirts that not only boast a very modern ankle line, but they also make your 3-Series look lower to the ground without any suspension modifications. Unfortunately, the side skirts just don’t quite fit in with the E46’s lines and stick out pretty badly.

Prior Design makes up for its sub-standard side skirts with a sweet backside addition to the 3-Series . This new rear bumper eliminates the econo-box-looking rear bumper that BMW slapped on the E46 3-Series and replaces it with a unit that features just the right amount of shape, a small diffuser, and cutouts for a dual exhaust setup. Our only issue here is what if the owner doesn’t have or want dual exhaust? Then he’s stuck with a goofy looking bumper.

Here’s the real test; does this kit make a regular 3-Series look like an M3? We have to be totally honest here; if you flew by at 80 mph with a nasty dual exhaust system rumbling behind you, we might mistake it for an M3. Sitting at a stop light, this kit is easily pegged as a poor knock off. The only component that somewhat resembles the M3 is the front bumper and even that is off track.

It’s a noble attempt by Prior and it would be okay as a regular body kit, sans the side skirts, but to call it an “M3 Styling” kit is a reach.

If you still want it, you can get the kit for €957 ($1,200 at current rates). We do suggest skipping the side skirts and finding another set that better suits the car, which will save you €199 ($250 at current rates).

BMW 3-Series GT

It looks like BMW hasn’t learned anything from the very unsuccessful 5-Series GT , as they are applying the same treatment to the 3-Series . The upcoming 3-Series GT has been caught testing again, this time wearing less camouflage than ever - the biggest sign that its official debut is getting closer. Rumors say that it will be unveiled at the 2012 Paris Auto Show in September.

The upcoming 3-Series GT will drop the 5-Series GT’s twin-door hatch design and will adopt a normal one piece hatch in its place. This will make it about 15 inches longer than the standard 3-Series , but will also improve the interior headroom due to the shooting brake layout. The four-door coupe designed body will combine a set of raised, sliding rear seats with a high lifting tailgate that should make accessing the larger cargo area very trouble-free. This formula may ensure that the 3-Series GT a bit more successful than the 5-Series GT.

As for the engine line-up, expect to see the same options found in the standard 3-Series models. This means there will be a choice of four engines - two petrol and two diesel - with power ranging from 184 HP in the base diesel version up to 306 HP in the 335i version.


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