The BMW M3 is one of those do-practically-anything cars. It has space for four adults, a big trunk and enough power to light up the tires at 50 mph. What more could the well-to-do enthusiast ask for?
Not much, actually, because we’re enthusiasts. That’s why we picked Yas Marina blue with white leather for our 2015 M3, that’s why we sprung for the $8,000 track-day brakes, and that’s why we hated pulling off the stock Michelin Pilot Super Sports and installing our Pirelli Winter 270 Sottozero tires. The latter signified the end of sticky blacktop and hot laps at the local track.
We put about 3,000 miles on our M3 in the second quarter. That’s about half as many as we did over the summer. We’re glad we installed those winter tires early; they allowed us to get out of even deep snow with a little finesse. We averaged more than 20 mpg in a mix of city and highway driving—beating the 19-mpg combined EPA rating. The Bimmer spent no days out of service, despite cresting 10,000 miles without an oil change.
This car gets a lot of love from other BMW drivers, who seem very happy to engage.
The BMW M3 is equipped with a 3.0-liter DOHC twin-turbocharged I6.PHOTO BY AUTOWEEK
“I got two separate thumbs-up from BMW drivers over the weekend. Who says they’re all pricks?” said one editor.
We still haven’t had any interior problems, besides the white leather broadcasting every foot streak we put on it. We’ve barely heard any creaks in the plastic paneling, even on freezing-cold winter mornings. Speaking of, those heated seats and heated steering wheel were worth their weight in ice in December. Well before the cabin heated up, our rears and fingertips were warm.
About that first question, though … What more could we ask for, if we’re being greedy?
A little more comfort, maybe. Even in its softest mode, the adaptive suspension is still rough on the kidneys. And that dual-clutch transmission doesn’t do much to alleviate the rough ride, either. Regardless of mode, the car still gets a little jerky as the clutch engages.
The M3 is more aerodynamic than previous models.PHOTO BY AUTOWEEK
That only happens at slow speeds, though. Once we put a little weight on that right pedal, that jerkiness goes away and the rush of acceleration comes on, along with seamless shifts and whooshing turbos.
And that’s what the M3 is really about: power and
control, not daily commutes. If you’re not a true enthusiast, keep on walkin’.
The M3 truly does everything a buyer wants it to. But it’s for the hardcore only. If you don’t see a lot of track days in your future, stick with the splendid, comfortable and quick 335i—your kidneys will thank you.
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