Chris Harris of EVO Magazine, one of the true enthusiast automotive journalists, had the opportunity to test drive the latest and greatest BMW M3 GTS. To make the review even more interesting, EVO added a twist by comparing the M3 GTS directly to Porsche’s 911 GT3 RS.
What’s it like?
Around the Ascari track in Spain, fast, very fast. There were standard E92 M3 Competitions to drive for comparison purposes and the GT3, predictably, monsters them. It doesn’t feel its 1530kg in direction changes, which is testament to the chassis changes which include a solid mounted rear subframe and adjustable dampers. Straight-line speed is impressive, BMW claims 0-62mph in 4.4sec and 190mph flat out. The noise is naughty.
But the big question surely is the price versus the performance. Is it really worth £100k plus? Well, it’s exclusive, beautifully engineered and very approachable. The combination of DCT transmission, front-engine/rear-drive and excellent stability systems make it easier to drive than a Porsche 911 GT3 RS. The brakes are the first on an M Car to match the straight line performance, a good thing.
But it struggles for traction next to the Porsche, doesn’t steer as sweetly and isn’t as fast – in a straight line or in terms of lap time. I found myself enjoying it immensely because it takes that age-old M3 trick – being able to carve a neat line one lap and then providing hilarious, smokey slides the next – and moves it a stage further. The nagging doubt remains though, that a BMW M3 Competition with a half cage, some sticky rubber, new suspension, bigger brakes, some noisy pipes and a re-map mightn’t be all that different. And the work wouldn’t cost £50k to complete.”