You won't find it noted on most calendars, but 2011 is a milestone for BMW enthusiasts: come next year, the vaunted M3 will have been in production for 25 years. To celebrate, the Bavarian automaker has crafted this: the 2011 BMW M3 Frozen Grey coupe.
BMW doesn't officially call this an anniversary edition, but the nomenclature does emphasize how this M3 differs from others: paint. Specifically, BMW has developed a unique metallic matte grey color, dubbed it Frozen Grey, and sprayed it over the coupe's exterior. Inside, the celebratory M3 mixes dark charcoal and Fox Red leathers in a vibrant two-tone combination, with the door panel inserts, armrests, and seat inserts splashed with the accent color.
Sure, the colors are nifty, but M3s have always been first and foremost about performance. Apart from the M3's 414-horsepower 4.0-liter V-8, Frozen Grey cars are fitted with the seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, the Technology Package (which includes adjustable performance settings via the 'M' button, along with a navigation system), and the new Competition Package. That last option lowers the suspension by 0.4in, revamps the electronic dampening and stability controls, and adds 19-inch wheels with a greater offset.
All Frozen Grey models also include the Premium Package (i.e. power folding mirrors, Bluetooth phone connectivity, Carbon Leather trim), heated front seats, premium audio system, Sirius satellite radio (bundled with a year's worth of service), and a USB/ iPod audio input. The cost for all this runs $78,900 (including destination and gas guzzler charges), roughly $5900 more than a comparably equipped M3 coupe. To sweeten the deal, BMW also tosses in a single day's worth of instruction at its Performance Driving School in South Carolina, something usually included only with the purchase of an M5 or M6.
Want one? You'll likely have to fight a number of other Bimmerphiles for the opportunity to park one in your garage. Only thirty examples are headed to the U.S., so you'll have to jump on the phone to grab your place in line. Reservations can be placed after 11:30 A.M Eastern on Monday, June 21, and we expect the allotment to sell out as quickly as the M3 moves...