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BMW M3 and M4

After allowing the internet to run wild, BMW has finally confirmed the technical details of the fifth generation BMW M3 and M4.

The new sporting models will come with a twin-turbocharged inline six cylinder 3-litre that pumps out 431bhp and 406lb/ft of torque. So the peak power is a minor improvement over the old model, but the switch to turbocharging has allowed BMW to increase torque by almost 40%. Fuel economy, however, is 25% better than the previous model.

Peak torque now comes at 1850rpm, which means the car should be much faster in the real world. The 0-62mph time of 4.1s is virtually unchanged, but the in-gear acceleration should be much stronger. Then there’s the ‘Smoky Burnout’,feature, which is as self-explanatory as it is tantalising.

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The third incarnation of the M DCT gearbox should make the most of the extra power, although purists will be relieved to see there’s a manual gearbox on offer too.

BMW has also stripped 80kg of weight out of both models for the M versions, with a lightweight aluminium bonnet and side panels and an optional carbon-fibre roof accounting for most of the weight savings.

Ceramic brakes will be offered as options, with gold-coloured calipers marking them apart from the standard steel items. Fade resistant and developed on the race track, the ceramics will reduce stopping distances and keep the brakes fresh even during hard use.

The bodywork is functional, as well as aggressive. Designed to improve downforce, the reprofiled front end also incorporates a Venturi effect through the oil cooling system to keep the engine in its optimum working temperature as well as reducing lift on the front axle. The hood comes with the now traditional bulging dome that allows for even more cooling hardware.

As for the stance, it’s wider than the standard car to accommodate bigger wheels and tyres. That gives the car more grip and poise in the bends.

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