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The 2001 E46 M3 appeared worldwide with the new 3.2 L S54B32 engine. At the time of the car's introduction, this engine had the highest specific output naturally aspirated engine ever made by BMW, producing 343 PS (333 SAE net hp (252 kW) in North America) and 365 N•m (262 ft·lbf) of torque. The first batch of E46 M3s delivered were in the striking color of Laguna Seca Blue. The available SMG Drivelogic (also known as SMG II) transmission, a Formula 1-style electrohydraulic manual gearbox with no clutch pedal and steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters, is also a highlight. The model also came with a new 6-speed transmission and red-line RPM of 8000, a first for any BMW. The engine also consisted of 6 independent throttle bodies and electronically driven throttles (without a cable).

The M3's S54 naturally aspirated engine produces more than 100 horsepower per litre (340 bhp/3.2 litre), a notable feat.

Of note....

M3 Competition Package (US Model)

Even though the M3 CSL was never exported to the United States, in 2005, BMW introduced a M3 Competition Package, a $4,000 option which offers a number of suspension upgrades taken from M3 CSL models. The package includes:

  • 19-inch Forged Alloy Wheels
  • Specially Tuned Suspension for the Competition Package
  • More direct steering ratio of 14.5:1 (from 15.4:1) allowing quicker turn-in
  • M-Track Mode (similarly to the CSL model) with a button mounted on the steering wheel
  • Compound cross-drilled rotors from the M3 CSL model and larger front rotor of 13.6 inches (from 12.8 inches)
  • Alacantra Steering Wheel and Hand brake
  • A new exterior blue, Interlagos Blue

E46 M3 Performance Data:

E46 M3   
ModelE46 M3 Coupe 6spd E46 M3 Coupe SMG E46 M3 Coupe 6spd
Quoted bhp333 @ 7900 333 @ 7900333 @ 7900
0-30 mph (sec) 1.7N/AN/A
0-40 mph (sec) 2.8N/AN/A
0-50 mph (sec) 3.7N/AN/A
0-60 mph (sec) 4.75.0/4.8 (auto/manual) 4.5/4.8 (new/40k miles)
0-70 mph (sec) 6.2N/AN/A
0-80 mph (sec) 7.8N/AN/A
0-90 mph (sec) 9.4N/AN/A
0-100 mph (sec)11.612.2/11.6 (auto/manual)11.2/12.0 (new/40k miles)
0-110 mph (sec)N/AN/AN/A
0-130 mph (sec)N/A21.0/20.3 (auto/manual)20.1/21.2 (new/40k miles)
1/4 mile (sec/mph) 13.3 @ 106.8 13.6/13.4 @ 106/107 (auto/manual)13.1/13.4 @ 107/105 (new/40k miles)
5-60 mph (sec) N/AN/A5.2/5.5 (new/40k miles)
Maximum mph 155 (limited)155 (limited) 163 (limited 155)
City/Highway mpg16/2419 (observed)23 (observed)
Quoted Curb Weight (lb) 3,41535083,523
Data Publication Date 2/017/023/03
SourceRoad & Track Car and DriverCar and Driver

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