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BMW’s newest M3 sedan was caught testing, and the wide fenders were a dead giveaway for our photographers. Check out the pictures below.
We wish we had more info about powertrains and the like but your guess is as good as ours. In all likelihood, the big, high-revving V8 will take a bow in favor of a turbocharged inline six. We’ve heard crazy rumors of a tri-turbo I6 in the past, but we’ll probably see something like the 1M’s I6 make an appearance – that is, a massaged version of the N54 twin-turbo I6 used in the 335i, albeit with a lot of power. Lighter weight will also play a part, helping to reduce the need for big power numbers.
Gallery: BMW M3 Sedan
Despite the stupid April Fool’s prank involving the BMW M3 Pickup, this announcement is not a joke. BMW is bringing a lightweight version of their M3 sedan to the M Festival, an event to be held at the Nurburgring 24 Hours race in late 2011.
Positioned as a stopgap between the standard M3 and the hardcore M3 GTS, the chassis, brakes and exhaust have all been upgraded, but power output should remain similar to the standard car. BMW hasn’t announced how much weight has been stripped out either, and we’re curious to see just how spartan the interior has gotten in the quest to add lightness.
The excited hoardes of car-geeks who drooled over a prototype BMW M3 pickup, spied lapping the Nurburgring, will have to steel themselves for more disappointment, as Road & Track magazine confirmed that this car will not be entering production.
“BMW M did indeed create the pick-up seen on the ’Ring, but it was just an internal project, not something that is in development,” Dave Buchko, BMW’s Advanced Powertrain & Heritage Communications Manager, said to R&T. “There are no plans to produce it.”
Aside from the sheer novelty of it, is there any reason to really lust after an M3 pick-up? The sedan, coupe and convertible provide a good range of bodystyles, and frankly, the only people that would be interest in an M3 pickup wouldn’t have the funds to purchase one.
[Source: Road & Track]
The BMW M3 Sedan will reportedly be phased out when the next generation (F30) M3 debuts. BimmerFile cites its inside sources at BMW, who claim dismal sales for the high-powered 4-door are mainly to blame. The cost of building the M3 sedan was also prohibitive as BMW spent a good deal tweaking the car to make it handle the way it does. Interestingly, the reason the car was every offered in the first place was due to demand in the U.S., but it never panned out.
As it stands, when the F30 M3 debuts expect the coupe model to be followed shortly thereafter by a convertible – but that’s it.
If its any consolation, BimmerFile also reports that a high-performance 3 Series sedan will be offered, along the lines of the current 335is.