The E46 3.2-litre straight-six M3 Coupe was for many, the pinnacle of M3 evolution, the tastiest looking M3 and the M3 with the sharpest edge. Retired in 2007 and replaced with the next gen E92 M3 Coupe whose recipe contains a 4.0-litre 309Kw V8, some amongst us missed the muscular, chunky body and more than a few motoring writers lamented the passing of the E46â€™s harder edge.
However, Australian buyers are voting with their cheque books, and the new generation E92 is selling up a storm. In its first six months on the market, 263 of the new V8 coupes have found new homes, nearly double that of the E46.
"We have been blown away by the level of passion and excitement our customers have expressed for the new M3 CoupÃ©," said Tom Noble, BMW General Manager, Marketing.
In addition to dealer launches on October 11 last year, BMW held a number of BMW M driving days around Australia, giving potential customers the opportunity to experience the new M3 on a variety of race tracks. The result is a doubling in demand and proof that Australianâ€™s are still suckers for a V8 engine, albeit a high revving and relatively efficient one.
"The 309 kW and 400 Nm of torque rush eye-opening acceleration of 0-100 km/h in just 4.8 seconds, but remarkably, the M3 CoupÃ© consumes only 12.4 litres of fuel every 100km on the combined cycle."
BMW Australia are now working on the business case for introducing the M3 Sedan into Australia, and in the meantime are able to confirm the M3 Convertible will be available to Australians from later in the year.
To-date, all of the E92 M3â€™s sold have been manuals, with the first of the M Double-Clutch Transmission equipped cars due to arrive mid-year. The addition of the new gearbox to the M3 range should ensure that sales continue to climb.
"In addition, we are very excited about the imminent arrival of the first of the new BMW M Double-Clutch Transmission with Drivelogic gearboxes. A limited supply of M3 CoupÃ©s fitted with the new gearbox arrives from June," Tom said.
The M Double-Clutch Transmission with Drivelogic is the worldâ€™s first double clutch transmission designed for high-revving engines. The secret to its swifter acceleration (0-100 km/h in just 4.6 seconds) and reduced fuel consumption (11.9 litres per 100 km) is a dual transmission structure with separate clutches, timed to overlap, leading to an uninterrupted flow of power, ideal for the sportiest drivers.