NAIAS 2014: 2015 BMW M3, Return Of The Straight Six

Phillip Thomas
by Phillip Thomas
naias 2014 2015 bmw m3 return of the straight six

The 2015 BMW M3/4 debuts at Detroit with a host of “adding lightness” and a healthy step up in power from the outgoing M3.

The high-winding 4L V8 is replaced by a direct-injected turbo 3L straight six with 425 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque, while dropping 20 pounds off the motor’s weight. The six speed is a carry over, but now gains auto rev-matching for those panty-dropping rev-matched downshifts. The alternative is a seven speed “M-DCT” dual clutch transmission. 0 to 60 is in a scant 4.1 seconds for the manual, and 3.9 seconds for the M-DCT…

The rest of the M3/4 is standard M-goodness. A proper limited slip differential, optional carbon brakes, a slightly more driver-oriented interior, and of course that M-badge. Carbon fiber panels through out, including a carbon fiber/plastic composite driveshaft, aid the M3/4 in dropping about 175 pounds off the outgoing M3. Overall fuel consumption and emissions are said to be down by 25%.

All this is good news: with an ATS-V around the corner, BMW drops the gauntlet with this update.

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  • GiddyHitch GiddyHitch on Jan 14, 2014

    Between the curious color choice, Predator gill treatment, M6 wheels, black roof, and questionable fender detailing, this thing may as well some tuner special making the rounds on E90Post. While the M3 name will always quicken the pulse after many fond associations with the E36 and E46 versions, my interest ultimately fades post-2006 (despite what my lying Autotrader/Craigslist search history may say). Quite frankly, a RWD 328d Touring is the BMW that interests me the most … but then again, you would expect a TTAC poster to write that.

  • Kosmo Kosmo on Jan 14, 2014

    Turbo engines are funny. For day to day driving, I love the low rpm torque, but when I'm out fun driving, nothing feels better than a well tuned NA engine climbing its torque curve as it heads towards red line! And BMW has formally reserved the internal code of F81 for a wagon variant. Let the waiting and hoping begin!

  • Chuck Norton And guys are having wide spread issues with the 10 speed transmission with the HP numbers out of the factory......
  • Zerofoo "Hyundais just got better and better during the 1990s, though, and memories of those shoddy Excels faded."Never. A friend had an early 90s Hyundai Excel as his college beater. One day he decided that the last tank of gas he bought was worth more than the car. He drove it to empty and then he and his fraternity brothers pushed it into the woods and left it there.
  • Kwik_Shift There are no new Renegades for sale within my geographic circle of up to 85 kms. Looks like the artificial shortage game. They bring one in, 10 buyers line up for it, $10,000 over MSRP. Yeah. Like with a lot of new cars.
  • Ribbedroof In Oklahoma, no less!
  • Ribbedroof Have one in the shop for minor front collision repairs right now,I've seen more of these in the comments than in the 30 years I've been in collision repair.