Steve Sutcliffe Tests Past and Present BMW M3s to Find Best Recipe for the 2014 Model

Oh, the lengths motoring journalists will go to in order to hit the track on the driver’s seat of a rear-wheel drive car. Then again, it’s all part of the job and to be frank, no one aspires to the profession in order to test Chinese compact cars…

Autocar magazine editor Steve Sutcliffe at least had a good excuse, though, for gathering three examples of BMW’s M-division finest on the Brands Hatch circuit.

With the new turbocharged M3 sedan and M4 Coupe (the name is still not confirmed) spotted quite a few times already making the rounds at the Nürburgring track, he wanted to give his opinion on how the perfect M3 should be like.

Sutcliffe picked the original E30, the CSL version of the E46 (which, by the way, wasn’t available in the U.S., nor was it ever offered with a stick shift…) and the current E92 coupe.

These are all different cars separated by a quarter of a century since the first one was launched in 1985 and the current in 2007, a gazillion changes in safety and emission regulations and giant leaps in automotive technology.

Nevertheless, they all share the same genes that made the M3 such a joy to drive – and which, at the same time, could explain the absence of the unloved E36.

You can watch Sutcliffe give his opinion on which elements of each of the past M3s the dear old chaps at the M-division should retain in the upcoming model, along with a lot of sideways action, in the video right after the break.

By Andrew Tsaousis

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