BMW has revealed its forthcoming M3 and M4 performance cars for the first time in full production form.
The M3, which is the performance range-topper for the Bavarian marque’s hugely popular 3 Series model line, will return in saloon form only, with the two-door coupe version now having its own 4 series model designation.
The M4 will sit at the top of that line-up. Both cars are fitted with the same engine, a turbocharged 3.0-litre, six-cylinder unit developing 425bhp.
The appearance of a turbocharged engine – the first time one has been fitted to an M3 since the first generation appeared in 1985 – has caused controversy amongst fans of the model, many fearing that its trademark high-revving power delivery would be lost.
That remains to be seen, though as the new M3 is capable of getting from 0-62mph in 4.3 seconds (4.1 with the optional automatic gearbox), before sailing on to a limited top speed of 155mph, there’s no doubting it has the performance worthy of the badge.
The turbocharged engine has also brought about a welcome improvement in fuel economy and emissions over the current model’s 4.0-litre V8. Equipped with BMW’s DCT automatic transmission, the M3 will return a combined 34.0mpg and emit 194g/km CO2.
As is tradition with BMW’s M models, the M3 and M4 wear aggressive body kits to distance them from lesser models. The signature quad exhaust tailpipes make a return, as does the bulging ‘power dome’ bonnet.
The new M3 and M4 arrive in UK showrooms next May, with prices starting from £56,175. If you can't wait that long, you can search for a used example of the current generation M3 here.