BMW M3 E46: the best-selling

We arrive at the year 2000 in the History of BMW M3. Half of the way to give life to the generation that still many argue as the best ever. With internal code E46, this BMW M3 not only enjoyed unprecedented commercial success (over 80,000 units), but to this day, enthusiasts from all over the world looking to be with a unit of the myth.


BMW M3 E46 (2000)

The redesign and the turn-of-nut were total. For the first time, a BMW M3 included features that today we have all internalized and use to distinguish a BMW M3 a BMW 3 Series, and even a BMW 3 Series ‘tuning’ that is similar to its counterpart in most sports.

The first M3 in equipping a limited-slip differential

Among these features, the side gills with the anagram of the pattern or the four exhaust outlets were included in this generation and have been used since then in the successive renovations of the model.

The aluminum hood was 40% lighter than the conventional one made of steel. And of course, in addition to the aggressive aesthetic, the new engine would become a legend.

A propellant six-cylinder and 3.246 cc that developed 343 HP may not seem like the figure is more shocking today. However, this power is reached at 7,900 rpm, and this, in the automotive world, are big words. Especially because at 8,000 rpm six pistons managed to exceed the speed of 20 meters per second, which means a rate similar to a Formula 1 makes decade and a half; completely awesome.


The BMW M3 E46 in the Circuit of Jarama

The maximum torque was 365 Nm at 4.900 rpm and thanks to the ‘diet’ that underwent the model, the car homologaba a weight of 1.570 kg. Thanks to this, speeding-up of 0-100 km/h in only 5.2 seconds. The engine of the BMW E46 received on six occasions the winner of ‘Engine of the Year’ between 2001 and 2006. It became a banner.But they were not the only novelties.

Has a power of 343 HP to move their 1.570 KG body weight

The driver, every time more protagonist and demands individual could choose the character of the car (not at the level that offers a BMW M3 to this day, but the beginning marked the trend of the future).

Two driving modes to change the car’s behaviour to suit the pilot. In addition, among the technical improvements compared to a BMW M3 E36 was included, for the first time, a limited-slip differential variable M.

The old differential had a tare fixed at 25%, but on this occasion, the lock could be between 0-100%, depending on the needs. Serial included the DSC (dynamic stability control) for added safety, and with their great brakes could stop from 100km/h to standstill in just 35 metres. In addition, he premiered automatic gearbox SMG II with six programs of operation. In the fastest mode, the transitions were done in 80 milliseconds.


this is the interior of the BMW M3 E46

In 2001, also in cabriolet version

But of course, a BMW M3 at these heights must have a version Cabrio, and on this occasion, it was in the year 2001. The roof was made of canvas and of a folding machine and had structural reinforcements that logic, the Coupe does not need. Her weight was 1.655 kg what took him away in 85 the figure for the Coupe. Speeding-up in 5.5 seconds from 0-100 km/h and its maximum speed is stopped at 250 km/h by the court-mail.

And to finish completion of a generation that will be remembered forever and ever and ever while the BMW M3 continues to exist, there was a special version called CSL (2003) and focused for the circuits. It was more powerful (363 HP at 7,900 rpm) and lighter (-110 kg). In fact, its acronym stands for ‘Coupe’, ‘Sport’ and ‘Lightweight’. They are very desirable.

BMW M3 E46 BMW M3 E46 Cabrio BMW M3 E46 CSL
Power 343 HP 343 HP 363 HP
0-100 km/h 5,2 seconds 5.5 seconds 4’9 seconds
maximum Torque 365 Nm 365 Nm 370 Nm
V. maximum 250 km/h 250 km/h 250 km/h
Weight 1.570 kg

1.655 kg 1.382 kg


The engine of the M3 E46 produces 343 HP

In addition, he was the forerunner of the use of plastic reinforced with fibre of carbon (PRFC), which today is used in the BMW i8 and other models of BMW. This car broke the barrier of acceleration of 5 seconds, and marked a record of 4.9 in the ‘sprint’.In total, this generation is sold 85.139 units and 29.633 were convertibles.