No more M3 coupe!
For those of us who have always dreamed of having our very own supercar sitting in our garage, it sounds like the end of a dream. In reality, though, it’s anything but…
…The M3 coupe still lives and breathes, but as of late 2014 it will be known as the M4 and the iconic M3 brand will be at home on a four-door sedan.
Probably the first question that leaps into mind is “Why?”. Apparently the marketing boffins at BMW decided that odd numbers were to be allocated to sedans and even numbers to coupes and convertibles. And thus the M3 coupe disappeared into the pages of time, replaced by the M3 sedan and the M4 coupe came to life.
Built for speed and comfort, by all accounts these closely related siblings are pressing all the right buttons when it comes to performance and luxury design.
Other than the issue of the M3 having two doors more than the M4 (which just seems wrong, on so many levels), there isn’t much of a difference between the two vehicles. Both vehicles are fitted with twin-turbocharged in-line six-cylinder engines, each of which produces 317kW, providing a little more power than the V8 in the current model. Fuel consumption is 8.3litres per 100km and the torque increase is an amazing 38% (up to 550Nm). M vehicle owners can, as always, tailor the engine, transmission, steering and dynamics to suit the individual owner.
Each vehicle has the option of a six-speed manual gearbox, although BMW is anticipating that 90% of purchasers will choose the double-clutch DCT gearbox which, by all accounts is faster and more fuel-efficient than the manual. BMW is also offering the option of carbon-ceramic brakes on the 19-inch wheels which, as many of our customers know from personal experience, are cleaner and long-lasting and improve braking performance.
No matter which way you look at it, these vehicles seem to differ by only minor degrees (and a couple of doors!). The M4 two-door is slightly lighter than the four-door M3 by 23kg. The coupe is slightly smaller by the sedan (4.1cm) and narrower (by 0.7cm).
For those of us who find comfort starting to win over performance (albeit incredibly slight), the M3 sedan is a car that is easier to live with, seating five comfortably and offering a larger luggage area than the M4 coupe.
So, the first, and probably the hardest decision for any potential M3/M4 buyer, is…how many doors do I want with my new M series?