Every time I walk away, I sneak another look
There are so many things I like about my M3.
The sound of the V8. It's performance. How it looks.
It's not a cheap car to service or run but given the visual impact and performance potential (and most importantly, the fun it is to drive) I give it a hearty thumbs up.
Tyre choice is important. I'm happy with the Michelin Pilot Sports I have on it, but understand from colleagues that the Continental is a better choice in terms of balance of performance and comfort.
Fuel quality is also important. I've found that the car will 'ping' on 95 so 98 is a must-use. There appears to even be some differences in 98. I've chosen to stick with BP and the pinging has gone away.
Purchased in July 2016.
Really beautiful driving car
We bought this second hand last year after taking it for a test drive it was very nice to drive and handles very well. The roof attachment is easy to use and great on a hot day and you don't want to crank the aircon on. The only issue was for me it being manual but I'm learning still to drive it
Looks, performance, sound; e92 M3
Now 2 years as my daily drive car, I'm still excited driving this vehicle. I test drove the Audi RS4 and the Merc C63; great cars although all Audis look alike to me and it seems every second or third C-class now is a C63.
I have the coupe and its more than adequate and comfortable to carry 4 adults around.
Amazing Everyday Drive Car Plus Track Performer
BMW M3 F80 is the best and top seller models of the BMW cars lineup specially in the M Power Coupes.
BMW M3 is quiet and impressive car because it can be use as a daily driver car or a track performance car cause it is fully loaded with the Mpower drivetrain which is more powerful than the 3 series of BMW.
Superb Car - A Sports Car AND Every Day Driver.
To begin with, I'm not an automotive journalist, as much as I'd like to be. I've not driven a Porsche 911 turbo, a Benz C63 AMG, or an Audi RS4 or 5. I'd like to, but unfortunately I have no friends with these cars. However (!), I do have one friend with a white BMW M3 E92 (carbon fibre roof), so I've was able to twist his arm and have a Friday to Monday experience of driving one.
On the Friday afternoon I had an initial drive, with my friend explaining the buttons and the do's and don'ts. He pointed to the "M" button on the steering wheel, saying "This is for LOTS of fun." After my initial instruction, I dropped him off and drove home to show family & friends.
The first thing I noticed, never having driven a V8 before, was the power and growl of the engine. Put your foot down too far and, like Bruce Banner ripping off his shirt to reveal the Hulk, the car changed from an everyday driver to a sports car. The car I borrowed had the DCT (Dual Clutch Transmission), which provided smooth up and down shifts.
The car has a number of "drive logic" modes, from 1 (namby), which displays 1 bar in the console, to 5 (racer). I was told they changed the shift curves, so the higher the mode the higher the revs of the car before a gear shift. For my part, I experimented and settled on 2, which was its start up default. Also, on the middle console, were three buttons. The first said "Power", which took me by surprise, but rather than increasing engine horsepower, it -- again -- adjusts the sensitivity curve of the acceleration pedal (if I understood the literature correctly); the second button had EDC (electronic damper control) and adjusted the stiffness of the suspension from comfort (no light), normal (one light) and sports (two lights). However, I found, on Canberra road, comfort was better. Maybe on a smooth track either normal or sports would be better, but on domestic road comfort is still quite hard. The final button was to turn off traction control, but I'm told one does so at ones own risk.
The seats are leather and comfortable, being electronically adjustable including seat width and lumbar. The seats are also heated, which in the Canberra winter would be a bonus. There are other luxuries, but generally this is a car to be driven, not pampered in, and in that respect it's superb.
This is a heavy car at about 1600kg, but it doesn't feel like one. The stiff suspension, 414hp engine, and stiffened body makes it feel a lighter, more nimble car. I thought my X5, with the xDrive and sports suspension, could turn a corner, but the M3 makes it look the truck it is (albeit, a good truck). It turns in the corner and the steering feels direct with superb feedback.
It's a powerful car, but there are more powerful cars. The M3 isn't the fastest off the lights, nor has the highest horsepower, nor is the best at many things. What it does, however, is blend all the "second best" attributes into a very sublime package. It's a joy to drive on the straight and a pleasure to drive on the bends. It rewards the better driver, which I'm not, and flatters the poorer one. I didn't use launch control (because I didn't want to contribute to my friend's tyre fund), but the car is definitely quick. Yes, a Porsche 911 turbo is quicker, and a Ford Falcon FPV F6 and Holden HSVs (if the literature's to be believed) are as quick for less dollars, but the M3 is -- in all likelihood -- quick enough for the 99% of people who don't have speed issues.
The sound. Oh, it growls. The M3 has a good sound system, or at least the one I borrowed did, but why turn it on when you can hear the motor?
Fuel economy. A weak point. If a person uses the engine aggressively then expect the movement of the fuel gauge to be visible. I got, for city driving, between 12-15 ltr/100km, and my friend tells me that, if pushed, the M3 can slurp fuel even faster. Definitely not a politically correct car. If you buy a V8 M3 with the expectations you'll have good fuel economy, then steel yourself for bitter disappointment.
The complete driving experience is what an M3 is about. Brutal acceleration on tap, handling to match, and a symphonic V8. In all these measures the M3 makes an outstanding package.
PS - brakes are good too, although a tad squealy.
Exterior & Interior
The 2 door coupe has a superb build quality. The seats are electric and there were no rattles in the vehicle I drove. One feature was a seat belt extender that extended the seat belt from behind the driver's seat (and the passengers) into ones hand, although the mechanism looked breakable and would be, no doubt, expensive to replace.
The car had carbon fibre roof which, coupled to quad exhausts and two air intakes on the bonnet (only one of which is operational, the other's 'for looks'), it does look the business. While the car may bring out the worst in a driver, it also, I found when driving sedately, brings out the worst in some other drivers on the road, most of whom thought I either wanted a drag, to be tail gated, to speed or any number of things that one, presumably does, with a performance car. Often, after becoming obvious that I'm driving reasonably sedately (it is, after all, my friend's car), said drivers would accelerate off in, presumably, disgust.
The car had most of the options anyone would tick on a 3 series. Adaptive, bi-xenon headlights with high beam assist, rain sensors, auto dipping interior mirror, heated front seats, an excellent sound system, climate control, voice recognition (although unable to determine any name I said from the phone book) in the i-drive system, and two cup holders, albeit on the passenger's side.
30 Second Summary
With prices dropping to "reasonable" amounts due to the introduction of the new M3/4, if you wanted to buy one now's the time to start looking. Be aware that running costs may be high, depending on how hard you drive the car, and if anything goes BANG then you'll be forking out plenty of dosh, regardless of whether it's the motor, gears or body. However, the build quality is superb and, provided the one you buy has full service history and a careful inspection beforehand (I'd recommend the BMW one), you should be OK.
Tyres, oil (it requires special oil), filters, petrol... all are expensive on this car. Worth it?
If, and only if, you can afford it, YES.
I've subsequently bought my own, a 2009 model, and love the car.
Spare Parts Cost
BMW spare parts are unbelievably expensive .Just bought 4 tiny O rings and 2 tiny paper gaskets to redo my Vanos E36 M3 Euro .$110 BMW told me to get lost when I complained. The only way to own a BMW is to do your own work and shop any where but the Dealer. They will break you if you use the dealer for labour and parts.No wonder o BM cars don't hold their value.
After 2 years the M3 with c320hp is great fun.Interior trim is crap esp door panels and make sure the clutch line is upgraded and bled 110% as pedal at BEST IS JUST OFF THE FLOOR.Remember anywhere but the dealer
M3 Magic E46 2001-2007
A great all rounder, after 5 yrs with my E46 M3 I am constantly amazed by its abilities. It can take me the 700km from Blackheath to Winton Raceway in comfort and I arrived fresh and ready for a fun track day. Fit the semi-slicks drive the nuts off the car and then head back the next day, and all done with ease. The Regularity at the Targa Tasmania in April this year was further confirmation of its all round abilities. The car is standard with 160,000 kms and has been reliable and rewarding, just racing brake fluid and "RedStuff" pads are the only changes from factory.
The look, the engine!, the performance and everyday usability.
Ernst&Young Perth Boy
Superb! I will sell my house just to own the latest one!
Only a select few model names in the automotive world that consistently make otherwise mild-mannered enthusiasts salivate uncontrollably. One that will do the trick is "911"; so will just about anything following "Ferrari," and perhaps "GT-R." I think it's about time "M3" joined this exclusive group, if it hasn't already. Like its illustrious predecessors, the 2008 BMW M3 offers a singularly alluring cocktail of sports-car performance and everyday practicality.
The previous-generation M3 was a tough act to follow, boasting a supremely capable chassis and one of the world's greatest engines at the time: a 333-horsepower 3.2-liter inline-6. As enthusiasts waited for BMW's M division to get its hands on the current 3 Series platform, many genuinely wondered: How could BMW possibly make the M3 any better? Well, for one thing, the company gave it a 414-hp V8.. and true to M3 tradition, it's a high-revving gem of a motor, providing ample midrange thrust that builds to a racecar-like wail as the tachometer needle swings past 8,000 rpm. For another, it brought back the M3 sedan... last offered in 1998.. and replaced the previous M3 ragtop with a retractable-hardtop convertible design. BMW head designer Chris Bangle also got his controversial hands on the current 3 Series' polarizing sheet metal, but the M3 makes the best of it, thanks to its blistered fenders and other go-fast styling cues.
So, does all of that add up to progress? Depends on whom you ask. Purists will still pine for the feral rasp of the previous-generation M3's inline-6, or the telepathic connection between chassis and driver that defined the original M3. All will agree, however, that the 2008 BMW M3's performance is nothing short of breathtaking. With a 0-60-mph sprint of 4.6 seconds and a 12.7-second quarter-mile, the M3 is squarely in Porsche 911 territory... yet it boasts a livable suspension and usable backseat in any form, and it can even be had as a sedan. You know what? Purists, schmurists. What sane enthusiast wouldn't lust after a perfectly practical daily driver that can give one of history's most iconic sports cars a run for its money?
The M3's greatness is such that it's hard to identify any direct competitors. Audi's lame-duck RS4 convertible rides on an aged platform, and its overall performance can't hold a candle to the M3's. And although the new S4 sedan is closer, it still doesn't quite match the M3. The Audi S5 is a V8-powered performance coupe, but it competes more against the 335i than the M3. Mercedes-Benz's C63 AMG has the M3 outgunned under the hood with its 451-hp V8, but it's only available with four doors and an automatic transmission. Small wonder, then, that the M3 name leaves enthusiasts salivating... there's just nothing else quite like it in the performance car arena.
You live your dreams in this beauty
Addition-Costs can buy you another BMW :p
BMW M3 all the way!! The look, the sound, the attitude, the desire for the best, the answer...BMW M3!!! This car (within its competitors) is unbeatable in many ways!!! Handling (as always), looks, ease to drive, features, options, safety, the badge!!!! Iv'e driven LOTS of exotic and expensive cars and I can tell you that the BMW M3 is my favorite!!! I urge you to go and experience the M3!!!
This is one of the worlds best cars, there can be no doubt about that. BMW (along with Mercedes and Audi) make the worlds best cars and this at the top. It has a gorgeous interior with wood trim and leather. The seats swallow you and hold you tight as you take corners behind the thumping V8 that produces so much power. The breaks are great and really let you know they are gripping as you slow down. The exterior looks sleek and well crafted with no obvious spaces between panels where there shouldnt be any. This is the coupe that all other car manufacturers would aspire to produce. World class.
A great mix of luxury and performance.
My first BMW after 31 years of driving mostly European cars. After six months I am still madly in love with this car. A true high performance car which can be driven in rush hour as well as on the race track. Mine has been 100% reliable with beautiful handling and performance. Great to have the two seats in the back for the kids. Factory muffler dose not sound too good so an upgrade is an option.
Awsome looks, big reliable power, great handling, high quality manufacture, rarely bottoms out
Quite thirsty, interior could be a little more 'upmarket' for such a super car
Going from a Holden Monaro v8 to a BMW M3 v8. The Holden represents outstanding value but if it is affordable there is no substitute for German technology or the service and benefits in owning a BMW, the body, the curves and the sound, this is 1 hot car, only appreciated was once driven.
Bought this vehicle over a Porsche 911, better value seats four comfortably, great engine (v8) easy to drive with heaps of power when you need it. Love the sound of the exhaust note especially when you activate the M mode. Great to drive every day but better when you take it out a track day... I love my M3.
Fuel consumption is high about 17 litres per 100 km (I don't care), I added a sub and amplifier to work in tandem with the high end audio, there is no real negative.
Questions & Answers
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