Turner BMW F80 M3 Project Car

** Updated 11/12/2015 **

The words BMW and M3 are synonymous with each other. Since the first generation E30 M3 was unveiled at the Frankfurt Auto Show nearly three decades ago, BMWs most iconic and revered model has cemented a legendary reputation around the world as a sports car by which all others are judged.

At Turner Motorsport, we have built our own reputation as one of North America's premier suppliers of BMW OEM and performance parts, particularly with each generation of BMW M3. Throughout our 20+ years in the industry we have constantly pushed the envelope the technology and performance for BMWs, using knowledge gained on the road and on the race track. In order to continue to be at the forefront of offering the latest in performance for your BMW, it was only natural that we get our hands on the latest and greatest from BMW. After months of waiting for our F80 M3 to make its way across the ocean from Germany, it has finally arrived.

The F80 M3 is a drastic departure from all previous generations of BMW M3s. In order to maintain adequate power and performance figures with increasingly efficient engines, BMW changed their engine philosophy throughout their entire vehicle range. With the introduction of the current generation of M5 and M6, BMW gave birth to a new era of turbocharged, direct-injected engines in their top-tier M cars for the first time in the company's history, something that has continued to the powerplant in the F80 M3.

Gone is the extremely high-revving, naturally-aspirated 4.0-liter S65 V8 from the E9x generation of M3, and in its place is is the S55, a 3.0-liter, twin-turbocharged and direct-injected unit producing 425 horsepower between 5500-7300 rpm, and 406 lb-ft of torque from as low as 1,850 rpm. While we love the high-revving nature of a naturally-aspirated BMW inline-six or V8, BMWs Twin-Power Technology delivers a product with great top-end horsepower, but produces a much greater amount of torque at low RPMs, making for a more friendly power band in normal, everyday driving.

First Impressions:

Our Project F80 M3, finished in eye-catching Sakhir Orange Metallic paint certainly has plenty of presence in stock form. The lines make the M3 looks very aggressive, both while at a stand-still and while on the road. The flared fenders and wide front fascia add a perception of great width to the vehicle too. For the interior we chose the cloth/leather combination. The cloth material has a carbon fiber-like texture and appearance to it, and together with the carbon fiber trim it completes the interior into a state-of-the-art cockpit.

Although we have had limited drive time behind the wheel of BMWs latest M3. Here are our driving impressions so far.

What a machine! On the road the M3 feels focused and involved, just a sports car the caliber of a BMW M3 should feel. The steering is very direct and linear, especially when in Sport+ mode. We passed on the optional BMW Carbon Ceramic brakes, and instead opted for the regular cross-drilled brake rotors for our M3. We're glad to say the stock brakes slow down our M3 very well and don't seem to fade nearly as quickly as on the our F10 M5 or F13 M6. Keep the weight down in the new M3 has a big role in the lack of fade.

The new S55 engine is extremely potent, and when combined with Sport+ mode and the optional BMW Double Clutch Transmission (DCT) with Drive Logic, makes for very exciting 0-60 runs. With hard accelerations the 3.0-liter, Twin-Power Turbo unit makes some sounds that are reminiscent of the iconic 3.2-liter S5