This is the new BMW M3. It has the usual quad exhaust, the beefy wheel arches and the now trademark side gills. Looks pretty good from this angle, no? Well, hold that thought - as we’d been expecting from various M3 and M4 leaks, spy shots and teasers, both cars have been given gigantic kidney grilles.
A set of official press images for the cars seem to have first leaked on Instagram account carswithoutlimits, although more pictures have since emerged. They show the cars from every angle, controversial front end included. In the most recent teasers, BMW has described it as ‘brave’ and ‘ready for its audience’. Right.
There are no new technical details to go with the images, although there isn’t a whole lot left for BMW to divulge. The company confirmed a few months ago that there will be entry-level, manual-only versions of the M3 and M4, each producing 473bhp from an ‘S58’ turbocharged inline-six. The 503bhp Competition variants will exclusively use an eight-speed automatic gearbox, with an all-wheel drive option available on those cars further down the line.
Since only Competition versions of M cars seem to make it to the UK now, it’s safe to assume we won’t be getting the stick shift M3/M4 here. A shame, but the incoming M3 Touring - which will be revealed later than its saloon and coupe siblings - should nicely make up for that omission.
Both of these M cars will be entering a tougher super saloon/coupe battleground compared to when the F80/F82 were launched seven years ago. Since then, Mercedes has built the staggeringly good turbocharged AMG C63, Audi has made the RS4/RS5 better to drive than ever, and Alfa Romeo has developed the awfully exciting Giulia Quadrifoglio.
None of those cars expects you to live with a ‘brave’ face, so it’ll be interesting to see how the new M3 and M4 fare compared to their predecessors.