Driven | BMW M3 Competition Package

A couple years ago I had the BMW M4 Convertible on test and if you had read that review, you will know how much I loved it. Well fast forward to 2017 where BMW have the Competition Pack on offer for the M3 and M4 models and I have fallen even further in love.

When spec’ing your new Bavarian beast, you have the option of ticking the box called M Competition Package for an extra R135,900 but what do you get for this whack to the wallet? For a start, you get an additional 19 horsepower (14 kw) taking the total output to 450 hp (335 kW) and a 0
to 100km/h sprint time of 4 seconds as opposed to 4.1 seconds. You also get updated driving modes, exclusive lightweight sports seats, some seriously sexy star-spoke 666 M alloys and black detailing around the car. The car we tested was also fitted with M carbon ceramic brakes which adds on a whopping R104,500 to the price of your M3 (base price of R1,142,800 for the DCT model).

We don’t need to talk too much about the styling of the car as it has not changed much since the M4 drive but having spent a few days with a Sakhir Orange M car, I can safely say that it is right up there with the best for the M3. Under direct sunlight, it is a serious head turner and the black elements (thanks to the Competition Pack) are the perfect contrast to this deep orange hue. The 666 M alloys sit phenomenally well and those yellow (gold) calipers hiding behind the spokes wrap up the package perfectly.

BMW claim the whole point of the Competition Pack is for the owner to drive to the track sensibly, rag it out out on track and return home without shortening the lifespan of the car. With the 20-inch rims and tightened suspension it is a little bit harsh day to day but if your commute is short or you just don’t give a sh*t that your insides are shaking around then you are sorted with a track weapon. When I had the M4 on test, I quickly realised that it was very tail happy and would way rather do donuts than hug an apex. This on the other hand is more ‘tame’. BMW have somehow given it more power but at the same time managed to keep the car in check and put the power down properly.

The car sticks to the tarmac and it instills confidence that wasn’t there in the regular M4. The howl coming from the M Performance pipes sounds fantastic and I couldn’t give a damn if some of the sound is artificial. What they have added to the Competition version of the M3 and M4 is some delicious exhaust overrun which can be seen and heard in the video below. In efficiency mode, the exhaust is much quieter but still loud enough to let your neighbours know you are home.

As a whole, the Competition Package really is properly brilliant and if you are buying an M3 (or M4), there is no reason to not tick the box. It takes the already excelling M car and thrusts you into another dimension of driving and excellence. This is one of the best cars I have had the pleasure of driving and certainly one of the cars I really desire to own one day.

PRO’s

  • Styling (badges and wheels)
  • Sound
  • Handling

CON’s

  • Fuel consumption
  • Bit harsh for day to day driving

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