BMW M3 may live on with straight-six-power after all



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For years, we’ve heard rumors claiming that the next-generation BMW M3 will go electric. BMW hasn’t confirmed these reports, it merely explained that it hadn’t made a decision yet, but a counter-rumor claims the sport sedan will be offered with both electric and piston power.

Citing anonymous sources, enthusiast website BMW Blog writes that the Munich-based brand will offer two variants of the next-generation M3: one will keep the twin-turbocharged straight-six, and the other will switch to electric power. Allegedly called G84 internally, the gasoline-burning model will make its debut in 2027 or 2028, according to the report. It will be based on the upcoming G50-generation 3 Series, which should make its debut before the end of 2026, and it will use an evolution of the current-generation car’s 3.0-liter straight-six engine.

On the battery-powered side of the range, BMW Blog adds that the first electric M3 will be called ZA0 internally and make its debut after 2027. Technical details such as the drivetrain’s configuration, driving range, and horsepower haven’t been released. Another interesting question that’s up in the air is whether the two M3s will look alike. As of writing, BMW has a policy of making electric variants of gasoline-powered models rather than launching a standalone range of EVs. The electric 5 Series is the i5, for example, and the electric 7 Series is the i7. The iX is the only exception; there’s no gasoline-burning version of the SUV. There’s no word yet on whether this approach will continue.

M3 fans who aren’t interested in an EV might be in luck, but those who want to see the piston-powered M4 live on could be disappointed. The report claims that BMW isn’t planning a gasoline-burning successor to the model, which is sold as a coupe and as a convertible. It adds that nothing is official at this stage, and that production plans can change up until 18 months before the first car rolls off the assembly line.

BMW hasn’t commented on the report, and it hasn’t revealed what the future holds for the M3. In the meantime, BMW Blog learned that the current car (pictured) will receive a round of updates later in 2024. The changes should fall in line with those recently made to the M4.



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