• Sep 18, 2007
The expansion of BMW's M3 lineup is expected to take place sooner than we anticipated, and a new version of the Bavarian bomber will finally put the oft-maligned sequential gearbox to rest. According to Auto Telegraaf, BMW will be debuting the M3 sedan at a major Stateside auto show, likely L.A. or Detroit, and along with an extra set of doors, it'll be sporting the automaker's new dual-clutch gearbox. Rumored to be dubbed "M DCT," the new 'box will get seven forward gears that can be controlled by either a new shift lever, much like the one found in the new X5, or steering-wheel mounted paddles shifters. BMW also plans to offer a traditional six-speed manual for those who prefer to row their own gears.
The regularly spied convertible version of the M3 is also on its way, which is proving to be an engineering challenge for the M-division due to the extra tonnage the retractable hardtop tacks onto the curb weight. We've heard that a track-bred CSL is also under development, and that its debut is likely to take place some time in 2009.

[Source: Auto Telegraaf via Motor Authority]


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  • 17 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      Blech. The latest M3 already does too much for the driver, way to isolate it even more.

      Forget about the absolute performance, some of us actually like to enjoy the experience. Well, at least Lotus doesn't appear to be interested in this crap.
      • 7 Years Ago
      so will the CSL have brakes that dont suck?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Eh, just stick with the 6MT. There will be an SMG version which offers automatic, not like the E36 automatic M3/sedan that bmw offered back in the day, which you can get if you are so inclined.

      -moshi
      http://m3blog.net
      • 7 Years Ago
      Does anyone know wether the new dual-clutch gearbox will for sure even have an "automatic" mode?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Blech. The latest M3 already does too much for the driver, way to isolate it even more.

      Forget about the absolute performance, some of us actually like to enjoy the experience. Well, at least Lotus doesn't appear to be interested in this crap.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Oh no... BMW taking a page from Lexus and offering a slushbox on a "sports car" rather than a true manual, somewhere in hell there is a flying pig at a corner that's freezing...and his name is Hansel...
        • 7 Years Ago
        Get your facts straight.

        1. The cars are available with standard manuals
        2. Direct Shift Gearboxes (DSG) ARE manuals. They are computer automated but they have clutches and gears are changed WITHOUT a torque converter. Automatic transmissions have torque converters.

        I sincerely doubt you'd call an F1 driver an automatic driver even through they're changing gears without a 3rd pedal. Ferrari's SMG/DSG-like system easily outsells the traditional manual now.

        While I may still prefer an old school manual, if I were tracking more often, I'd want the DSG/DCT as perfect shifts are intoxicating prior to hitting a corner. No heel-toe, just tap and make it happen in a flash.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Knowing BMW the DSG-like tranny adds another 300 lbs to the car's weight. It'll be the first M3 to break the magical 4000 lbs barrier. What's next for the M3? The 4500 lbs M3 convertible.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Bimmer's definitely got a weight problem.

        Besides, I'd much rather row the gears myself...like anyone's gonna use the manual function on an automated manual anyway.
        • 7 Years Ago
        We've got an a3 with DSG and any time I borrow my fiancee's car, I use the manual functions. Constantly. It's too much fun not to use them.
      • 7 Years Ago
      "It's a manuel"
      "No it's not, it's an automatic"
      "No it isn't"
      "Yes, it is!"
      "No it isn't!"
      • 7 Years Ago
      so if there are 2 clutches, i get to use my 3rd leg?
      as for the box, i'd prefer the 6spd stick .....but the paddles would be cool... damn, i just want to drive one......without the salesguy next to me.

      & i dont want to see the M3 made a convert..boo
      • 7 Years Ago
      300 lb penalty ?? surely it cannot be that bad!

      I hope they make this available on the lowly 335i...

      Every car I have ever owned has been a manual tranny, but recently I got to drive a maserati with the F1 transmission. So nice!
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'd like a four-door M3 with a six-speed manual, thank you very much.
      Barring that, I'll take the E46 M3. Despite what Car and Driver said, it just seems to me the E46 is more visceral than what the new M3 will be.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Oh no... BMW taking a page from Lexus and offering a slushbox on a "sports car" rather than a true manual, somewhere in hell there is a flying pig at a corner that's freezing...and his name is Hansel...
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