When BMW announced xDrive for the M3, it was met with a bit of hesitation from the Bavarian faithful. Sure, BMW M had already done xDrive on its M5 but that was a bit, heavy, 600 horsepower luxury-car-turned-performance-car, all wheel drive felt like the logical evolution. The BMW M3 is supposed to be relatively lightweight and simple, right? Well, surprisingly, after driving the M3 Competition, the idea of adding xDrive seems really exciting, actually.
The new G80 BMW M3 Competition is unlike any M3 before it. It’s not delicate and pure, like an E46 M3 or E30 M3. It’s not as high-strung and sonorous as the E92 M3. Instead, it’s brutal, violent, and unbelievably capable. It changes direction potentially better than any other BMW before it, its power simply never relents, and it will absolutely dominate its competitors on a track. It’s a monster of a car. Its only real downside is that, sometimes, it struggles a bit for traction.
Despite being so brutal, it’s a pretty adjustable car. You can drive it nice and tidy if you want, clipping apexes and setting lap times. Or you can act like an absolute hooligan, kicking its ass around and playing with its drift analyzer. However, if you’re really on it, there’s so much torque that it can be really easy to overwhelm even its incredibly sticky rear Michelins. It struggles off the line, too, as we’ve seen it lose drag races to less powerful, typically slower cars because it just can’t hook up. All-wheel drive would solve that problem.
I know, I know, all-wheel drive is for nerds and squares, rear-wheel drive is for the purists, the automotive virtuosos. However, part of the M3 Competition’s charm is just how violently fast and capable it is. It pummels the road into submission like a four-doored Nissan GT-R and changes direction like a housefly. It’s such a brutal, incredibly exciting experience. If it had all-wheel drive, it would only amplify that experience.
Of course, the purists will still want rear-wheel drive and that’s fine, I get it. However, while driving the M3 Competition, I kept thinking that it’d actually be really good with xDrive all-wheel drive, potentially even better. I can’t wait to drive the M3 Competition xDrive and I actually think it could be the best M3 in the lineup.