Servotronic steering with two manually adjustable control maps
Rear-wheel drive keeps the rack-and-pinion steering of the BMW M3 Coupe free of drive forces. A further enhancement is hydraulic Servotronic power assistance controlling steering forces as a function of road speed. There is also a choice of two different control maps activated through normal and sport modes with a console-mounted button.
In Sport mode the BMW M3 provides direct and immediate response with a relatively high steering effort. In the Normal mode, power assistance is comfort-oriented and requires less steering effort.
The interior of the BMW M3 has always been a place designed for performance driving, but without compromising the comfort of the driver and the passengers. The new BMW M3 Coupe continues this tradition with the latest innovations. The four seats are surrounded by powerful contours and flowing lines highlighting in particular the concave and convex surfaces. The horizontal lines dominating the area around the dashboard as well as the harmonious surfaces of the side linings give the interior a dynamic note.
The cockpit control area tapers out between the front seats into a newly designed center console which discreetly "swings" towards the driver. Finished in black leather, the console harmoniously continues the instrument surrounds and the control area in terms of both color and shape, comprising three function switches (Power, DSC, and optional EDC) for activating and deactivating the electronic driving programs on the side facing the driver.
Apart from the clear design and optimum ergonomic arrangement of all controls and instruments, the choice of colors inside the new BMW M3 Coupe helps the driver concentrate on driving. Regardless of the upholstery and trim color, the footwells, parcel shelf, headliner, A-pillar trim and the upper part of the instrument panel are all finished in Anthracite. This uniform, dark color scheme around the windshield helps the driver focus on driving.
There is no question as to the heritage of the vehicle upon opening the door of the new BMW M3 thanks to the M car logo in the door sills. The unique nature of the vehicle carries to the dash where the dual circular instruments typical of BMW - the speedometer and fuel gauge as well as the tachometer and oil temperature display - are in specific M style. A feature typical of BMW M cars is the variable warning zone on the tachometer that informs the driver of the recommended engine speed depending on the engine oil temperature. The borderline between the yellow pre-warning zone and the red warning zone moves up as a function of increasing oil temperature to the maximum limit of 8,300 rpm. The digital displays presenting the time, the outside temperature and odometer, as well as the various warning lights, are positioned between the two circular instruments.
The M3's leather steering wheel, with its thumb contours resting firmly in the driver's hands, provides an optimum grip for precise movement of the steering wheel. The spokes within the steering wheel incorporate the remote control buttons for the audio system and mobile phone, as well as the optional MDrive button. An additional auxiliary button may be programmed through the optional BMW iDrive system.
As an option, both the front seats are available with backrest-width adjustment, while the rear seats may be equipped with folding seatbacks which provides the 15.2 cubic foot luggage compartment even greater capacity.
A premium AM/FM/single-disc CD audio system comes standard with an auxiliary input jack. Individual entertainment options include SIRIUS satellite radio, HD radio and a USB-enabled port for control of an Apple iPod or iPhone media player. These three options can be bundled together in the Technology Package, should one choose to have them all together.
For vehicles equipped with Navigation, the comprehensive information and entertainment systems are controlled by the refined BMW iDrive. Selecting the Navigation/iDrive option also brings the performance-oriented, steering-wheel-spoke-mounted Mdrive button.
Safety begins with the body structure and continues inside
Occupant safety begins with the design of the new BMW M3's body structure. Together with defined deformation zones, the use of high-strength steel ensures smooth and direct transmission of forces in a collision and optimum absorption of loads acting on the car. The space available for deformation is also used to avoid any damage to the passenger cell and keep damage to the body itself to a minimum, even in a severe collision.