Matt Farah seems to be driving a lot of BMWs lately and in this latest episode of The Smoking Tire, he drives another. This owner’s car is a 2008 BMW E92 M3 Coupe that’s been slightly modified to be a little bit faster, a little bit louder and a little more track focused. So Farah takes it for a spin to see how it is.
Firstly, it’s amazing how good the E92 M3 still looks today. All these years later, even after its successor has been out for a few years, the E92 M3 is still as handsome as ever. I’ve said it for years, but the entire E9x range of BMW 3 Series’ will still look good in 20 years. Just a great design that’s simple enough to age well. The interior is the same way, as it’s somewhat plain and simple, but classy and attractive as well as ergonomic. Farah even notes how comfortable the car is inside and how well it’s held up, even if he isn’t a fan of the higher seating position.
This owner’s E92 M3 has some underdrive pulleys equipped, for the power steering and accessory pulleys, which reduces their draw of engine power, resulting in about 10 extra ponies for the 4.0 liter S65 V8. He also added a louder exhaust and StopTech brakes, the latter for his track time. So it’s still pretty stock, with just some extra spice to make it more exciting and track friendly for him.
The S65 engine in the E92 M3 is a thing of joy, as it revs out to its 8,450 rpm redline and makes an unbelievable noise doing so. It’s one of the best engines BMW ever made and it’s a shame that it’s gone. The new S55 engine in the brand-new F80 M3 is technically superior in every measurable way, but listening to the old S65 V8 wail to redline makes me completely forget about the new engine and yearn for the old one back. Power figures be damned, give me noise.
Farah expresses a similar sentiment as he consistently praises the engine, and the car as a whole, throughout the video. It makes such a good noise and you can see and hear how far Farah is able to rev it out before having to shift. The shifting is done via a six-speed manual, by the way, which is refreshing to see. While the DCT is cool in the E92 M3, because it can fire off insanely fast upshifts at nearly 9,000 rpm, the manual is the proper gearbox for this car.
In the video, Farah points out more than once that the E92 M3 is a great enthusiast’s car to be had at an affordable price nowadays. You can find nice pre-owned examples, certified or not, for less than $30,000, which is great for what you’re getting. For less than the price of a brand new BMW 320i, you can get an M3 with an engine that feels like a proper motorsport-derived engine. It also handles really well, is incredibly smooth and even comfortable for the daily grind. It’s just a fantastic overall car and can be had to affordable prices nowadays and Matt Farah seems to agree.