Is there anything interesting about its design?
The M3 sedan is based on the 3 Series but like a beefy footy player wearing a suit the M3 stretches that 3 Series body to what looks like breaking point with a bulging bonnet, and muscular guards that just manage to cover tyres that look like oil drums. There's the enormous air-intakes, the gill-like vents, and a quad exhaust.
You can tell a Competition from a regular M3 by the black gloss finish to the grille, side vents, window trims and the exhaust tips. There’s also the wheels – the Competition gets 20-inch M light wheels that mirror the M4 GTS’s rims.
Inside the cabin differs from an ‘everyday’ M3 with lightweight M leather seats, and seatbelts with M colour stitching.
As the straight-six of the BMW screams into battle with you strapped to its back it’s hard not to feel suddenly very alive.
At 4671mm long, 1877mm across and standing 1424mmm tall the M3 is 85mm shorter end to end than the Mercedes-AMG C63 S, but 38mm wider and 2mm lower in overall height. The new Giulia is an even closer match at 32mm shorter, 4mm narrower and only 2mm taller than the BMW.