Friday, September 14, 2012

2009 BMW M3 - Review & Test Drive

We were recently lucky enough to get our hands on a 2009 BMW M3 thanks to AM PM Motorcars located in San Diego, California. It was immediately apparent that this car was built to impress both inside and out. Its extreme performance, aggressive stance, high intensity discharge lights, 19-inch alloys wheels, hood bulge and quad exhausts are just a few of the characteristics that set this BMW apart from the standard 3-series.

Getting into the driver’s seat you instantly feel the refined presence of the German interior. Mounted on the dashboard were the usual controls as well a screen used for navigation, radio, and a few other features. The electrically adjustable leather bucket seats seemed plenty comfortable for daily driving or long highway trips. 

This particular M3 also came with the iconic lightning fast 7-speed dual clutch transmission. Mounted on the steering column were the unique F1-Style DCT paddle shifters for quick and easy shifting. There is also an “M” button located on the steering wheel that when pressed, puts the cars in “sport mode” which stiffens the suspension and activates a more aggressive throttle response – the first thing I pressed once the car was in motion.

We took to the streets and it became obvious why the M3’s dual clutch transmission has become so iconic over the last couple of years. It reduces each shift transition to a mere tenth of a second and shortens the 0 – 60 time by 0.2 seconds. Once I had the opportunity to put the pedal down the shifts were so quick and smooth that the only thing indicating the car had moved to the next gear was the menacing growl of the 4.0-liter V-8. From idle to its 8,300-rpm redline the M3 delivered its 414 horsepower in a linear and consistent manner, and the sound coming from that perfected German V-8 revolving 8,300 times per minute is one that is not often heard outside racetracks.

 As I opened up the engine again on a straight and felt my entire body compress into the leather bucket seats the 0 – 60 of 4.4 seconds was finally put into perspective. The M3 lurched with almost instantaneous throttle response and within a few seconds I needed to let off the gas completely because I was already 10 mph over the posted speed limit of 60.

The harder I seemed to push the M3, the better it responded. It just seemed to offer so much control and responded in such a smooth manner to every instruction it was given. After driving around for quite a while, a simple conclusion was reached: The M3 offers an unparalleled mix of comfort, control and performance that absolutely lives up to its reputation as being one of the best drivers cars in the world.

Special Thanks to: AM PM Motorcars
(619)-962-0633 - 11631 Iberia Pl San Diego, CA 92128


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