BMW celebrates three decades since the introduction of the M3 with a limited-edition sedan packed with extra features

Also known as the F80, the current-generation M3 was launched in 2014 with new, evolutionary styling, a revamped interior, BMW’s latest technology, and a brand-new engine. The biggest change compared to the previous M3 was made under the hood, where the high-revving, naturally aspirated, 4.0-liter V-8 was replaced by a turbocharged, 3.0-liter inline-six. Although the F80 is not the first M3 to use a six-cylinder engine, it is the first to employ forced induction. Updated for the 2016 model year, the high-performance four-door is expected to be replaced by a new model in 2019.

Much like any generation before it, the M3 has spawned numerous special edition models, while customers also had access to exclusive features and colors via the Individual customization program. With the M3 nameplate celebrating three decades since its introduction in 2016, BMW has launched the limited "30 Years M3" edition. Limited to only 500 units, the anniversary M3 follows in the footsteps of the M5 "30 Jahre M5," which was unveiled for the 2015 model year to celebrate 30 years since the debut of the high-performance sedan.

The larger four-door was limited at only 300 examples and only 30 were imported to the U.S. The vehicle sold like hotcakes and one changed owners for a whopping $700,000 at auction. Will the M3 "30 Years M3" become as desirable as its bigger cousin? Let’s have a closer look at what this sedan has to offer until we find out.

Continue reading to learn more about the BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition.

  • 2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-6
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    444
  • Displacement:
    3.0 L
  • 0-60 time:
    4 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    155 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    82675
  • car segment:
  • body style:

What makes the BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition special

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Exterior
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The first thing that catches the eye when looking at the M3 "30 Years M3" is the exclusive Macao Blue Metallic exterior color. The bright, flashy hue was first introduced as an option on the first-generation M3 and BMW revived it for the special occasion. The limited-edition sedan also stands out thanks to the Competition Package it received as standard. The bundle adds sportier bumpers, special wheels, and the BMW Individual High Gloss Shadow Line with enhanced features such as the black chrome tailpipe. Other goodies include unique M gills with "30 Years M3" lettering on the front fenders. The sedan rides on 20-inch M light-alloy wheels with 666 M star spoke design and mixed tires.

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Interior
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Overall, the limited-edition sedan has just enough extra features to stand out in a crowd. It’s only drawback — if you’re a purist — is that the current M3 comes in a four-door configuration, whereas the first-gen M3 was available as a two-door only.

On the inside, the M3 "30 Years M3" also benefits from the upgrades that come with the Competition Package, including M sports seats and seatbelts with woven-in BMW M stripes. The "30 Years M3" logo adorns both the door sills and the carbon-fiber trim of the dashboard to remind owners that this is no regular M3. The same lettering is also embroidered into the front headrests. Finally, the limited-edition sedan features an exclusive full leather Merino trim courtesy of BMW Individual. The standard upholstery comes in Black/Fjord Blue, but customers can opt for a Black/Silverstone combination. Both layouts have color-matching contrast seams that give the sporty cabin a sophisticated character.

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Drivetrain
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Under the hood, the Competition Package injects an extra 14 horsepower into the M3’s standard 3.0-liter inline-six, increasing the output to 444 horses. Torque remains unchanged at 406 pound-feet. The bundle also adds the Adaptive M suspension, which has been upgraded to withstand the increased performance. BMW also optimized the new springs, dampers and stabilizers, and modified the setup of the three driving modes and the Active M differential on the rear axle. All these improvements make the "30 Years M3" model slightly quicker than the standard model. Whether you go with the standard six-speed manual transmission or the optional seven-speed DCT, the sedan will get you to 62 mph a tenth-second quicker that the series production model. That’s four seconds in the automatic and 4.1 ticks for the manual. Not only quicker, the "30 Years M3" also sounds more aggressive thanks to its M sports exhaust system.

U.S. pricing and availability is not yet known, but BMW says that the anniversary model will cost €10,000 more than the BMW M3 with the Competition Package in Germany. With the latter available from €90,290, it’s safe to assume that the "30 Years M3" will fetch in excess of €90,000. For reference, the standard M3 retails from €72,600. In the U.K., the limited-edition sedan will start from £82,675.

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Exterior
- image 678007

Sales will commence in the summer of 2016, exactly 30 years after the signing of the first contract for the purchase of a BMW M3.

Should the "30 Years M3" cross the pond to the United States, expect it to cost around $80,000 before options.

BMW M3

2016 BMW M3 High Resolution Exterior
- image 629485

The F80-generation M3 was launched for the 2014 model year in Europe and the 2015 model year in the United States. For the first time in history, the high-performance model was offered only as a sedan, following BMW’s decision to split off the coupe and convertible from the 3 Series and sell them as the 4 Series. As a result, the M3 Series Coupe became the M4. Despite having the previous 4.0-liter V-8 replaced with a 3.0-liter inline-six, BMW managed to make significant improvements to the cars performance and dynamic, mainly due to the use of turbocharging. However, the engine swap was heavily criticized by purists, who claimed that BMW had stripped the M3 off its heritage by dropping the naturally aspirated mill. For the 2016 model year, the M3 retails from $63,500 in the U.S. The M4, on the other hand, starts off at $65,700.

Continue reading our full review on the BMW M3 here.

Press Release

With the launch of the first generation of the BMW M3 in 1986, the BMW M GmbH, at that time operating under the name BMW Motorsport GmbH, revolutionized the sporty mid-range segment. No other manufacturer had previously ever deployed genuine motorsports technology so consistently in order to transform a high-volume production model like the BMW 3 Series into a thoroughbred high-performance sports car that is also fully suitable for everyday use. The first BMW M3 set the standard by which other manufacturers were measured.

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 678009

Meanwhile, BMW M has continuously refined its automotive icon across five model generations. And over all these years the BMW M3 has retained its original character. Probably no other automobile combines distinct racing genes and unrestricted day-to-day suitability into such a highly emotional overall concept. To mark the 30th anniversary of this automotive icon this summer, BMW M is launching the exclusive special edition of the BMW M3 “30 Years M3”, which is limited to 500 cars worldwide.

Edition “30 Years M3” in the legendary colour Macao Blue metallic.
As a tribute to the first generation of the BMW M3, the anniversary edition “30 Years M3” is painted in the exclusive exterior colour Macao Blue metallic, which once celebrated its premiere in BMW’s colour range as a special option for the first generation of the BMW M3.

The edition “30 Years M3” builds on the Competition Package, which is optionally available for the BMW M3 series production model. It comprises an increase in engine output by 14 kW/19 hp to 331 kW/450 hp (BMW M3 “30 Years M3”: combined fuel consumption: 8.8–8.3 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 204–194 g/km). Also included in the Competition Package is the Adaptive M suspension, which has been comprehensively aligned to the increased performance. Optimised features also include new springs, dampers and stabilisers, modified characteristic curves of the three modes Comfort, Sport and Sport+ as well as a correspondingly modified standard Active M differential on the rear axle and Dynamic Stability Control feature (DSC). Moreover, the Competition Package of the edition model includes forged 20-inch M light-alloy wheels with 666 M star spoke design and mixed tyres (front: 265/30 R20, rear: 285/30 R20).

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Interior
- image 678010

All of these measures lead to a noticeable increase in dynamic performance, which is not least also reflected in enhanced acceleration. The BMW M3 “30 Years M3” with optional 7-speed M double clutch transmission sprints from 0 to 100 km/h in just 4 seconds, which is 0.1 seconds faster than the series production model. Even with the standard 6-speed manual transmission, the car completes this sprint 0.1 seconds faster than the production model.

In terms of exterior design, the Competition Package also includes the BMW Individual High Gloss Shadow Line with enhanced features, including a black chrome tailpipe trim for the M sports exhaust system, the characteristic and potent sound of which contributes significantly towards the highly emotional driving experience. The edition model also features exclusively designed M gills in the front wings bearing the logo “30 Years M3”.

Sporty, functional interior with an exceptionally high-class ambience.
The Competition Package upgrades the interior of the edition “30 Years M3” with specific M sports seats in a skeletal design that combine perfect support with distinct travel comfort over long-distances. Seatbelts with woven-in BMW M strips also enhance the sporty interior ambience.

The logo “30 Years M3” on the front doorsills reminds both driver and front passenger of the BMW M company icon’s unique history. The wording “30 Years M3 1/500” on the carbon fibre interior trim strip of the instrument panel gives indication of the exclusiveness of the BMW M3 “30 Years M3”, which is limited to 500 cars worldwide. “30 Years M3” is embroidered into the front headrests.

The BMW M3 “30 Years M3” features an exclusive full leather Merino trim in bi-colour Black/Fjord Blue or optionally in Black/Silverstone with colour-matching contrast seams that effectively underscore the anniversary model’s sporty and sophisticated character.

2016 BMW M3 "30 Years M3" Edition High Resolution Interior
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Compared with the BMW M3 with Competition Package, the additional cost of the anniversary model is €10,000 in Germany. Market launch is scheduled for the summer of 2016 – this being exactly 30 years after the signing of the first contract for the purchase of a BMW M3.

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