>Welcome to our Buyer’s Guide for the BMW E46 M3. This guide will be a comprehensive guide including background, production numbers, models, and more. Most importantly, we provide 10 things you should know about the BMW E46 M3 before you buy one.

For the last 35 years, car enthusiasts have lusted after BMW M3 models. Throughout the six generations, BMW grew this model from obscure homologation special to sports car legend of the highest order. Successful on the streets and the tracks, each of M3’s generations has its own distinctive character, making the discussion on which is the best or the purest endlessly fascinating.

The BMW E46 M3, produced from 2000 to 2006, is arguably the closest to the ideal of what the M3 should be and amongst one of the best driver’s cars.

Background: How The E46 M3 Came About

The first M3 (E30 generation) was introduced in 1986, followed by the second (E36), which was presented in 1992.

The E30 was a racing car in disguise, a homologation special built by BMW so its M Performance division could race.

Its enormous success on the track and amongst the performance car buyers showed the company that there was significant potential. So, BMW made M3 into a much more mature, faster, and comfortable model when the second generation arrived. Purists protested that the E36 M3 wasn’t that much different from the standard model.

For the successor, the E46 M3, the company decided to go all out and create it almost from scratch with a host of individual parts and components. 

When the E46 M3 was introduced in late 2000, the car industry was stunned. It was a proper M car with elegant yet aggressive styling, high-revving and mighty (for the standards of the day) engine. The engine was matched with an engaging six-speed manual and innovative SMG II automated manual transmissions, producing sublime handling.

The first tests revealed that the car drove as great as it looked and that BMW hit the home run with this version of their best-selling E46 3-Series platform. 

The heart of any M car was the engine, and in the case of E46 M3, it was the S54, 3.2-liter, a straight-six unit with 343 hp and 8,000 rpm redline. With an alloy block and head and electronically-controlled throttle bodies, it also delivered 269 lb-ft of torque and 0 to 60 mph times of just over 5 seconds. Even today, those are respectable figures, but in 2000, it was close to base Porsche 911 numbers.

The E46 was offered in two distinct variants – coupe and convertible, but the

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By: Sports Car Digest
Title: BMW E46 M3 Buyer’s Guide: 10 Things You Need To Know
Sourced From: sportscardigest.com/bmw-e46-m3-buyers-guide/
Published Date: Wed, 12 May 2021 05:17:28 +0000