The Competition Package for E92 M3 was introduced at the beginning of this year as an option, aiming at offering the owners of M3 Coupe a feeling closer to the CSL model through a set of performance-oriented enhancements included in the pack.
Along with visual improvements which include modified rear lights with glass covers in a homogeneous red color, the Competition Package further enhances the highly responsive chassis by installing a 10mm lower suspension and 19” wheels with greater offset for a wider track. Combined with remapped Electronic Damping Control and Dynamic Stability Control systems, the M3 with Competition Package is the best handling production M car ever built.
UK journalists continue to review the Competition package, and this time Car Magazine offers us a thorough analysis of the pack. The final evaluation is extremely positive, the car scoring maximum points in Handling, Performance and Feelgood Factor, among others.
And when you get on and enjoy the engine when it’s running…
You’ll experience one of the best cars on sale today, and one of the world’s great engines. Once you’ve let it warm through of course – set off in a cold M3 and you’ll have to wait for the oil temperature needle to swing towards 100deg and the adjustable red zone on the rev counter to head towards 8000rpm before you feel comfortable giving it full beans. But when everything is warm there’s a crisp rasp to accompany the slightest twitch of your right foot, and a completely addictive V8 roar when you head for the red line. It’s no deep-chested muscle car, but something much more highly strung, a little delicate but nonetheless brilliant. And when you’re homing in on 8300rpm, watching the shift lights flickering on, you’ll think there’s no better place you could possibly be.
The Competition Package itself is a £3315 option (), and because it includes a set of 19-inch wheels and the adjustable dampers (ordinarily £1265 and £1295, and a must-have for most M3 drivers) BMW reckons it’s not only good value but will be taken up by 60% of customers. The bonus is that the bigger wheels are clearly inspired by the E46 CSL – they’re very tasty. A 10mm suspension drop, lifted from last year’s M3 Edition, and a special M mode for the DSC system complete the package. And does it make a difference? Unfortunately we didn’t have a track to play on, but the reality is this latest M3 feels better than ever, with a sharp turn-in, strong resistance to understeer, and the ability to let you schlep along with the hoi polloi one moment, and act like a complete hooligan the next. Just make sure you leave the dampers in their regular setting – anything overtly sporting is just too stiff for the UK.
The 4.0-litre V8 engine alone is enough to award the M3 five stars, but that the fact it steers brilliantly, goes bloody fast, looks great, and now does its bit for the environment too, makes it better than ever, and one amazing motor car. We love it. We want one.