Car News

New BMW M3 and M4 Arrive with 473-HP I-6 and Questionable Looks

The all-new 2021 BMW M3 sedan and M4 coupe have been unveiled, arriving with a 473-horsepower turbocharged inline-six and, perhaps more notably, some rather unconventional looks.

These are performance cars, so we'll get right to the good stuff. Powering the new BMW M3 and M4 is the automaker's new twin-turbocharged inline-six engine, which produces 473 horsepower at 6,250 rpm and 406 lb-ft of torque between 2,650 and 6,130 rpm. A standard six-speed manual transmission or available eight-speed automatic routes power to the rear wheels, enabling a 0-100 km/h of 4.2 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h. For the speed freaks, there's also an M Driver's Package, which removes the top speed limiter and allows the M3 and M4 to stretch their legs all the way to 290 km/h.

Customers can also go one step further with the hardcore M3 and M4 Competition. These models extract 503 horsepower and a massive 479 lb-ft of torque from the same twin-turbocharged inline-six engine. The six-speed manual transmission will not be available on the Competition models, but unlike the core M3 and M4, the Competition can be equipped with all-wheel-drive. These models also get other unique equipment including a different standard alloy wheel design and carbon fibre shift paddles.

Underpinning the new BMW M3 and M4 is a longer and wider new platform with standard electronically controlled shock absorbers. The performance compacts also get a new M integrated braking system, which offers adjustable settings for brake pedal feel, while an optional M Traction Control system allows the user to choose from 10 different traction control settings. Both the standard and Competition models come with a new variable-ratio electronic power steering rack, as well, that self-adjusts steering feel/weight based on the vehicle's current speed.

As for the exterior styling, BMW says its new performance compacts are the "most aggressive and focused M3 and M4 models to date," thanks to their unique interpretation of the BMW kidney grille, wide stance and prominent lower rear diffuser. The interior is standard M3/M4 fare, featuring a chunky sport steering wheel, bolstered bucket seats and carbon fibre trim. One highlight, though, are the optional M carbon bucket seats, which are lighter than the standard seats, feature taller side bolsters and build on the motorsports-inspired look of the cabin.

The 2021 BMW M3 will start at $84,300 in Canada, while the M3 Competition has been priced from $88,300. The BMW M4, meanwhile, is slightly more at $85,100 for the core model and $89,100 for the Competition. The performance compacts are slated for a global launch next March should begin to arrive at Canadian dealerships shortly thereafter.