BMW has always had this fascination with motorsports. Through this type of sports they have flexed their engine muscle and have shown that they are at least at par with the world's best. So it was only but natural that BMW released a sports version of the BMW 3 series when the series was released in 1986. The M cars as BMW puts it are sporty versions of all the series they have produced. With the 3 series, BMW released the M3 initially as the E30. And from then on, every generation of the 3 series was provided with an M version. A 2.3 L S14 engine, derived from the M10 Formula 1 straight-4, powered the first M3. This version produced 195 hp, and later versions upped displacement to 2.5 L and 238 hp. 786 cabriolets were also produced.
One of the main reason why BMW wanted an M3 was because they intended to join the German Touring Car Racing. One of the requirements in being a participant in this event was that BMW had to generate a minimum of 5000 units a year. The car that is touted to partake in the championships had to have the same basic engine, intake, and aerodynamics as the production model. Suspensions had to fit stock pick up points, and although bigger wheels were permissible, they had to fit within the stock fenders and no modifications should be done.
There were many M3s that came out. An assortment of models were produced, some of which never even touched American soil. In any case, many M3s sold wonderfully in US, and up to know many are still in demand. BMW engineered this sports car to be superior over others, and their engineering are superb. It is imperative though that to maintain its race car quality proper maintenance is done. Only superior quality BMW M3 parts should ever be placed inside this vehicle. BMW M3 parts are not to hard to find, there are many retailers out there who has seen its popularity and has stocked piled up already. It is common knowledge that BMW uses parts only that has been guaranteed of their durability and of their quality. Some of the more popular parts for the M3 are the engine parts, some of which are used to bolster the power and make it faster. BMW M3 body parts are also big sellers to replace those who have unfortunately been damaged in accidents.
It is no wonder BMW M3 owners are eager over BMW M3 parts. Their choice of this vehicle already signifies their good taste in cars. They want to attain higher levels of performance for this excellent driving contraption. Many have experienced the joys of expanding and maximizing the potential of their ultimate driving machine.
How to Get your BMW M3 Road-Trip Ready
BMW certainly lives up to its tagline "Designed for Driving Pleasure" with the fleet of cars it has produced over the years. If you are a BMW owner, you know this for a fact. Experts behind BMW's creations ensure that customers won't be left wanting when it comes to the design, aerodynamics, comfort, and safety. Take for instance the BMW M3, which is a perfect epitome of the car maker's expertise. The M3 has proven to be one of the most preferred BMW vehicles, since its conception in 1985, up to this time because it is capable of adapting to rapid changes of direction, sharp turns, and acceleration. And because it is now equipped with an economical turbocharged engine, the BMW M3 is great for long-distance drives. Now, if you intend to do that, there are several things you need to do for your M3.
You may know where your destination is but you're never sure of the road conditions that you will encounter on your road trip. Make sure your tires have the right amount of air, which means it must not exceed nor go below the amount specified by the manufacturer. Also, always watch out for tire wear like feathering, cupping, over inflation, under inflation, and second-rib wear. You can make sure your tires are up to the long drive through visual examination or by feeling the tread by hand. You can also use a pressure gauge to thoroughly check all your tires.
- Never neglect your brakes.
With a car like the BMW M3, for sure you will always be tempted to push the accelerator to the limit, which makes having a well-functioning braking system imperative. Before embarking on a long-distance road trip, make sure your brake pads are at least fifty percent thick. If they're not, then you'd better replace them before pushing through with your trip.
- Inspect the essential fluids.
Just like the human body that requires water in order for the organs to work, your M3's system also needs the right amount of fluids to run smoothly. Make it a point to check your car's oil, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid before every long-distance trip. If any of these is low, top it off before leaving. It would also be beneficial to take some spare bottles of these fluids on the road.
Even if your M3 is fairly new, a tune up is always beneficial. Observing the recommendations stated in the manual will help maintain your car's peak efficiency. You have to be financially ready because this is the time when you'll need to get replacements for worn-out parts including the spark plugs, ignition rotor, fuel filter, air filter, and plug wires. However, what you'll get in return for what you spent is tenfold. First, you'll have better performance, which means no roadside breakdowns, stalling, or difficulty in starting up during your road trip. Likewise, you'll also enjoy reduced emission, increased gas mileage and of course, great resale value.
BMW M3: The Car that Set the Standard in Sport Sedans
The BMW M3 series became successful in setting the standard for performance and quality among modern sport sedans. Based on the regular E3 series, the M3 took a great leap forward and surpassed its predecessor by incorporating powerful upgrades in the engine, handling/suspension, exterior and interior body. The new BMW cars received a lot of positive feedback, and until today, these car models are still hot in the market despite the tight competition between Mercedes and Audi.
1986: BMW M3 E30
The E30 was developed and designed to compete in the coveted World Touring Car Championship. The first car in the series was powered by a 195-horsepower-four-cylinder Formula 1 engine, known as the BMWS14. It also had flared wheel arches and a more rigid suspension for better handling and steering. BMW must have done really something good because the M3 won not just once, but several times in the European Touring Car Championship. It was also a two-time champ in the German Touring Car Championship.
1988: BMW M3 E30 Road Car
A newer version was produced, and this time, it was made to be driven on the common streets. A lot of changes were incorporated in this model to totally veer away from the standard E3 series as well as the earlier version of the M3 E30. Twelve unique panels were added in the new car’s body to improve its aerodynamic features. The enhancements done on the wheels include the box-flared arches in front and rear that can accomodate the bigger and wider 5x120 wheels. Some of the other notable mechanical adjustments were the addition of brake cylinders, front and back brake rotors, and calipers. This model was well appreciated by the consumers, and because of that, an additional 786 convertible versions were made to satisfy the customers’ demands.
1992: BMW M3 E36
The next version looked almost the same as the models released before. The most significant change was the inclusion of a better engine that boasts 240 horsepower. Because of a better engine, this model is way faster than the earlier M3 versions, even though it gained about a hundred pounds. The chassis was also altered. The modification greatly improved the handling and balance, so the E36 became known as one of the best handling cars of the 90s billed by a popular auto enthusiast magazine, Car and Driver. This was also the first BMW car that included a high-tech computer software and system.
2000: BMW M3 E46
The hooligan style that was featured in the previous models made a come back in the E46. The car looked more rowdy with its bulging hood, fender grilles at both sides, and again, flared wheel arches. To top it all, a 3.2-L, S54-M-tuned engine was added and it produced a powerful 343 horsepower. Other high-performance models were derived from it and were sold in the U.S. The M3 GTR and M3 CSL were some of these.
2007-present: BMW M3 E90, E92, and E93
The announcement the fourth generation BMW M3 was first heard at the 2007 Geneva Motor Show. Initially, the next car version was set to be called M4, but due to the popularity of the M3 series, BMW decided to retain the name. The latest version is more powerful than ever with a BMW S65 engine that generates 414 horsepower. Aside from the engine upgrades, the newer M3s have the recent technological innovations such as LED rear tail lights, M-DCT automatic transmission, and carbon fiber hood and roof. The E92 M3 is available as a coupe and the E93 as a sedan. BMW has already announced details about F80 M3, which is the next model in the series. It is set to make its first appearance in the 2013 Geneva Motor Show.