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Car reviews - BMW - 3 Series - M3 coupe

The Car

13 Jun 2002

UNMISTAKABLE for any other 3 Series coupe, M3 yells its formidable intentions from the rooftops with the most aggressive iteration of the shapely E46 design yet seen. In your face yet perfectly refined, the wildly flared wheelarches - the exclusive sheetmetal a first for M3 - wrap around massive rubber at all four corners and combine with the lower-roofed, faster-windscreened two-door bodyshell and powerdomed alloy bonnet to make the M3 standout from even the most performance orientated crowd. The heavily sculpted front and rear bumpers, side skirts and frameless windows marry well with the large quad tailpipes, subtle "M" badging, discreet rear wing and staggered 18-inch alloy wheels to produce a purposeful yet undeniably attractive presence - either standing still or in full flight. This longer, wider and generally more substantial looking M3 may be slightly heavier, but retains its predecessor's level of slipperiness and is far more threatening than before.

Did you know?

M3's 20mm-wider wheelarches are not just for show: they were necessitated to accommodate those massive 18-inch alloys, which are mounted further apart than before at both ends

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