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BMW M3 Saloon Concept (2011) first official pictures

By Ben Pulman

First Official Pictures

01 April 2011 11:45

This is a very special BMW M3 saloon, a four-door concept built with M3 GTS parts and prieviewing a potential production car. It's just been unveiled at a special M Division event in Germany, alongside a one-off M3 Pick-Up.

How has BMW turned its lovely M3 saloon into this M3 Concept?

Details are still a little scarce (Jethro Bovingdon is at the M Division event in Germany and is hunting out more facts and figures) but we hear it's halfway between the M3 and M3 GTS. Power is definitely up on the M3's 414bhp, but we hear it's not quite as powerful as the 444bhp GTS – we don't yet know whether it runs the standard 4.0-litre V8 or the enlarged 4.4 from the GTS, but we'd guess at the former.

However, there are other M3 GTS parts, including the darkened 19in alloys and the bigger front and rear brakes. The new front splitter apes the GTS, but it's not quite as wide. There's a new bootlid lip spoiler as well, plus black kidney grilles, tweaked suspension and a lighter exhaust. M Division sources have mentioned 'lightweight construction' but Jethro couldn't spy a carbonfibre roof and with the interior locked (in typical M concept-style) and engineers remaning tight lipped, we'll have to wait a little longer for more details.

In line with the differences between the M3 coupe and saloon, this car won't be as hard or as focused as the GTS. We hear production is pretty much guaranteed, but UK sales aren't so likely as the M3 saloon is outsold by the coupe and convertible in Great Britain; in 2009, 144 E90 M3 saloons were sold in the UK, compared to 686 E92 coupes and 384 E93 convertibles.

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