There have been tons of rumors surrounding the engine choice for the next BMW M3, ranging from a new V6 engine to an inline-six engine with tri-turbo (our favorite rumor), but now, the President of BMW North America, Mr. Ludwig Willisch has finally confirmed that the next M3 will feature an inline 6 layout - the same layout that will be used for the M4.
Willisch also said that, at some point, BMW was indeed considering a V6 engine for the next M3, but in the end, this choice was dropped. What he didn’t specify was whether or not the new inline-6 engine will get bi-turbo or tri-turbo. Regardless of the technology, the future M3 will deliver at least 450 HP.
Ludwig Willisch also confirmed that the next M3 will be lighter, faster, more powerful, and more efficient than the current M3. It will be offered with an optional or standard manual transmission.
Don’t expect to see the new BMW M3 launched until late in 2013 or early 2014.
In what can only be described as a truly incredible and informative review, Chris Harris recently pitted the BMW M3 GTS, Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Black Series, and Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0 against each other for the Drive network and has delivered yet another piece of automotive art.
All three cars, particularly the BMW and Mercedes-Benz are aimed at a very small, niche segment of the market where prospecting buyers want cars which can perform equally well on the track as they do on the road. The 911 on the other hand, is for all intents and purposes, a full-on race car converted for road use and carries much greater expectations.
This may surprise some, but all of the aforementioned cars were priced fairly similarly when they first hit the market and even though the BMW M3 GTS is no longer produced, it’s as relevant as it was back in 2010 immediately after its launch.
Sure, more fun can be had in other cars than in these three, with Harris highlighting the fact that an Ariel Atom could be purchased for the same money but that of course, doesn’t work on the road like a truly incredible car should. As a result, Harris assembled these three cars to test both their on-track and off-track capabilities while also seeing which promotes the greatest amount of hooliganism.
We won’t spoil the end result for you, but needless to say, this is one of the very best ways to spend 25 minutes.
Rastatt, Germany is, by most accounts, a place you wouldn’t be able to point on a map even if you’re life depended on it, but that doesn’t mean the town is a mere afterthought. On the contrary, it’s the home of German tuner ATT-TEC, a tuning company that specializes in wicked programs for BMWs.
Their latest project is for the BMW M3 E93 Convertible. Comprised of a complete aerodynamic and performance upgrade, ATT-TEC went to great lengths to give the M3 some serious looking edge. Aesthetically, the tuner gave the sports car a matte black wrapping foil to go with new carbon fiber components, particularly on the hood, the grille, mirrors, and side gills. Then, they fitted the M3 with a new set of 20" one-piece forged ADV.1 rims wrapped in 245/30R20 (front) and 295/20R20 (rear) Vredestein Ultrac Sessanta tires. Finally, ATT-TEC gave the car a KW Variant 3 inox-line coilover kit, which is adjustable for ride height, rebound, and damping.
Moving on to the engine, ATT-TEC fitted an SK I “Sporty Drive” supercharger system from G-Power to the M3’s 4.0-liter V8 engine, before reprogramming its ECU unit and adding a new stainless steel exhaust. The result of all the engine tweaking is a car that now carries an output of 520 horsepower, a 100-horsepower increase from the stock model’s 420-horsepower output.
As far as prices go, the aesthetic modifications cost €2,600 ($3,400) while the complete wheel-and-tire set hits €7,150 ($9,400) with the coil over kit costing €1,929 ($2,500). From there, the supercharger system will cost you €12,740 ($16,800) with the stainless steel exhaust setting you back another €1,595 ($2,100). Basically, customers are going to have to REALLY want to upgrade their M3 to dish out all of this cash.
The BMW M3 E46 is a car that’s already past its production date, but for a tuning company like G-Power, "out-dated" isn’t a word that can stop them from building one of their customary - and impressive - tuning programs.
In order to give this M3 E46 something to brag to about, G-Power decided that the only way to do so was to make it more powerful than the current M3, the E92. Powered by a 3.2-liter straight cylinder engine that produces 343 horsepower and 269 lb/ft of torque, G-Power fitted a new SK I "SPORTY DRIVE" supercharger system to the car’s engine, resulting in an increased output of 450 horsepower and 339 lb/ft of torque.
In addition to the supercharger system, G-Power also fitted the M3 E46 with a new set of 20" Silverstone Diamond wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport Tires while also adding a new coilover suspension, a stainless steel muffler, and high performance brakes.
With all the modifications in tow, the G-Power-tuned M3 E46 is now capable of hitting 0-124 mph in just 14.7 seconds with an electronically limited top speed of 186 mph. By comparison, the current M3 - called the E92 - comes with a 4.0-liter, M V8 engine that delivers 414 horsepower.
In their mission to set-up the M3 E46 to be faster and more powerful than the current generation model, G-Power accomplished all that and more.
Didn’t we just feature a BMW M3 that was tuned by the boys over at European Auto Source?
Jump back a few weeks to the middle of March 2012 and you’ll see a similar BMW M3 that was treated to a comprehensive tuning program from VF Engineering and EAS. But while that particular M3 - billed as "Orange Fever" - sported a stealthy matte black carbon fiber look, this M3 is dressed with a custom Matte Estoril Blue Paint finish by C&C Collision. Fancy color notwithstanding, the M3 also gets an aerodynamic kit from Vorsteiner that includes a carbon fiber GTS3 front bumper, a carbon fiber aero boot lid, an aero rear diffuser, and a carbon fiber roof. Matte black kidney grilles and fender gills are also part of the exterior program, as are the carbon fiber mirror caps and the new set of 19" 360 Forged Spec 5 Wheels with Brembo TG BBK brakes.
Under the hood, European Auto Source provided the M3 with a VF620 Supercharger System with its own Vortech V3Si Compressor and 6.0-7.0psi manifold boost pressure, shooting the sedan’s overall output to an impressive 700 horsepower, around 80 more ponies than the Orange Fever M3.
In 2011, the US market received a special edition M3 "Frozen Silver" Competition Edition and now it’s the Brits turn to get in on the Frozen paint job action. BMWwill be providing UK customers with a special edition M3 Coupe Frozen Silver Edition as part of BMW M GmbH’s 40th anniversary, and while US customers only got 40 units of the special M3, British customers will get 100 units to fight over.
On the exterior, the M3 Coupe Frozen Silver Edition features a Frozen Silver metallic paint and a new set of 19" matte black alloy wheels. These features are joined by a new exhaust, side gills, and kidney surrounds in carbon fiber and Jet Black bonnet intakes. The car’s ride has also been lowered by 10mm for an even sportier look. For the interior, BMW has added Black Novillo leather with contrast stitching and Palladium leather armrests and inserts, a new steering wheel sheathed in Alcantara, and plenty of carbon fiber to finish off the look.
Under the hood, the BMW M3 keeps its usual 420 HP V8 engine with power transferred to the road via the standard seven-speed M DCT transmission.
German tuner Vorsteiner and their proverbial partners-in-crime, Wheels Boutique, have come out and released another tuning program that’s sure to warm the hearts of BMW M3 E93 owners everywhere.
The program, which features Vorsteiner parts and built by Wheels Boutique, takes the M3 E93 and effectively converts it into a GTRS3 that’s ripe and fit for some serious action.
Among the carbon fiber GTRS3 aero parts that have been added to the M3 are a new front bumper, front fenders, side skirts, a new rear bumper, rear fenders, a boot lid, a vented hood, and an aero boot lid. All the carbon fiber goodness fitted into the M3 is complemented by a new set of 20" Vorsteiner VS-350 Forged Concave wheels wrapped in Michelin PS2 tires.
We’re not ones to be easily awed by tuning programs, but we have to give some serious props for this one made by Wheels Boutique and Vorsteiner. We know how awesome the M3 is, but for these guys to make it look like a GTRS3 is taking it to a whole new level.
The only thing left is a performance upgrade...right?
The 2012 racing season has already begun and we’re now seeing participants of the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters - that’s DTM, in case you didn’t know - show off their vehicles in the past couple of weeks.
BMW Motorsports has been a regular supplier of race cars in DTM for the past couple of years. This season, the German automaker’s racing division is back in DTM with six BMW M3 DTM race cars, including the recently unveiled Castrol EDGE BMW M3 DTM.
The racer will carry the design livery of Castrol EDGE, considered as Castrol’s strongest and most advanced range of engine oil, and Aral Ultimate, Germany’s largest network of gas stations.
As far as powertrain is concerned, the race car will be powered by a V8 engine that was fitted with its own air restrictor to adhere to racing regulations. With the air restrictor in place, the M3 DTM is capable of producing 480 horsepower, while hitting 0-60 mph in just three seconds, and carrying a top speed of 186 mph.
Say you already have a BMW M3 that packed serious tuning enhancements in the form of VF Engineering’s VF620 program; that doesn’t mean that your car can’t have any else done.
This particular M3, re-dubbed as the "Orange Fever," was initially given the aforementioned VF620 Supercharger System, one that gave it an astounding 620 horsepower. But now that the car has logged over 70,000 miles, it’s only fitting for it to be re-tuned. Thanks to VF Engineering and European Auto Source, the Orange Fever was given an updated ECU unit, an LCI taillight conversion, and Macht Schnell Competition spacers, resulting in an increased output of 643 horsepower.
Additionally, the car was given matte black carbon fiber aerodynamic panels from noted German tuner Vorsteiner that includes a carbon front bumper, trunk diffuser, and exhaust system. Last, the Orange Fever was fitted with a new set of 20" Radenergie R7 wheels.
All told, the project looks spectacular, especially when you can combine the matte black finish on the aero kit with those 20’s and the re-upped engine credentials - even if it’s got some serious mileage under its hood.
It’s time to take a short break from all the news surrounding the Geneva Motor Show to talk about a car that won’t be making its debut in Switzerland. This car is the next generation BMW M3 sedan which has been caught testing one more time in Sweden.
When it comes to the engine powering the next M3, rumors have stated two possibilities. The first is a fresh 3.3-liter six-cylinder engine equipped with three turbos for a total output of 450 HP. This engine will sprint the M3 from 0 to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds, while top speed is still electronically limited to 155 mph. The second possibility is a new 3.0-liter, six-cylinder engine that is currently under development. The future M3 will feature a more aggressive design to help distinguish it from the standard 3-Series sedan.
The new generation BMW M3 will be unveiled in 2013 and will only be offered as a sedan. Coupe and convertible models will go on sale under the 4-Series badge.