BMW M3 (2007 – 2013) Review

BMW M3 (2007 – 2013) At A Glance


+Stormingly fast performance. Superb V8 engine sound. High quality interior. Great feelgood factor, yet still docile at low speeds. Available as coupe, convertible or saloon.

-Not as involving to drive as an M3 should be. Analogue instruments too small to read quickly. Expensive to run.

Insurance Groups are between 43–44
On average it achieves 87% of the official MPG figure

The BMW M3 is the car that single-handedly sealed BMWs reputation as a maker of some of the very best drivers' cars. As the generations have come and gone, it's remained a car with a certain aura about it, not just because of the performance and handling, but because of the way it involves the driver. The latest generation was initially launched as a coupe, before a four-door saloon and stylish convertible followed.

The saloon is obviously the most practical, but it lacks the style of the two-door models, which are perhaps better suited as performance cars in terms of styling. It's a good Q car but there are key hints at the performance available. The bonnet bulge accommodates the immense V8 engine while flared arches, side skirts, unique 18-inch alloys and quad exhausts are all M trademarks.

Whichever version you go for you'll be assured thunderous performance from the sublime 4.0-litre V8 which delivers 420bhp to give a 0-62mph time of less than 5.0 seconds. Not only does it sound superb, but it's amazingly responsive at any revs, making the M3 hugely enjoyable to drive. The standard gearbox is a six-speed manual while there's an excellent seven-speed DCT semi-automatic which actually suits it better and even provides quicker acceleration.

The big problem however, is actually being able to use this power. While the M3 is docile and happy at low speeds, you don't drive a car like this just to potter about in, it's designed to be driven quickly and that's where it's at its best. But in the UK, actually enjoying the performance it offers is impossible given the legal speed limits and the number of safety cameras on the roads. As a result, it feels like it's always on a tight leash.

BMW M3 2007 Road Test

Real MPG average for a BMW M3 (2007 – 2013)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

15–25 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Is the BMW M3 a future collectable?

"Do you think BMW M3 Convertibles (E93) - earlier, low mileage, around £20,000 - will hold their value, or continue to depreciate? Bearing in mind they're one of the last naturally aspirated V8 'sports' cars."
Generally, a car's depreciation curve hits bottom after 15 years - sometimes sooner, sometimes later. Most of the depreciation occurs within the first three years when a car's value is halved. The devaluation that occurs between, say, ten and 20 years of age is generally between 10 per cent and 20 per cent (of its initial purchase price). High-performance models aren't immune to this curve, although owners might not lose as much money. In the case of the BMW M3 (E93), the V8 sold for more than £50,000, and is now available to buy for £17,000 - £20,000. So you if you buy one now, you may see values hold steady or dip slightly - but value fluctuation should be limited. Do remember, though, that once cars pass the ten-year mark, the amount of money required to keep them on the road continues to increase at a high rate, which is where high-performance models can sting you because parts are often more expensive (this is true also of consumables, such as tyres).
Answered by Keith Moody

Buying a used BMW M3 for £25k - which model is best?

"I am about to retire and feel like treating myself to a real car having driven company rubbish over the years, I have had 10+ years of motor sport experience so I am not naive and fancy a BMW M3 saloon. My pocket will run to £25,000. Can you recommend a year and model within that budget?"
£25k should get you an M3V8, but obviously beware of one that has been used for track days. You'll get a younger 335i manual for the money, and for road use that is almost as quick as well as easier to live with.
Answered by Honest John

Should I buy a BMW M3 convertible or a Jaguar XK8 Coupe?

"I am running a 105,000 mile 2001 Saab 9-3 convertible, worth about £2500, I guess. I fancy an XK8 Coupe. But can I get one with a sunroof? Or do I get another 4-seater convertible, which would be more sociable with my friends; maybe something a bit hotter such as a BMW M3, for example? I could spend £16,000 to £20,000. I do about 7000 miles a year."
M3 straight sixes are high maintenance. It’s a 12-plug engine and a new set of plugs costs £500, for example. However, you are in the money for a current shape 2005/2006 XK 4.2 convertible and you can get four into them if you saw the back passengers' legs off. That's a much better bet than the cheaper coupe.
Answered by Honest John

What would you recommend instead of a BMW M5?

"We've had three BMW 525i automatic cars in succession over the last fifteen years, and we love the ride, the space and the performance. I'm thinking about perhaps moving up to a two-year-old BMW M5, but these are few and far between (though I'm in no hurry), and they are still pretty expensive. Can you recommend something that we'd like as much but would be cheaper and easier to find?"
An M3, or an Audi RS4. But since these are both quite high maintenance, it's better to simply settle for a BMW 335i.
Answered by Honest John
More Questions

What does a BMW M3 (2007 – 2013) cost?