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2008 BMW M3 Overview

The big news for the 2008 BMW M3 is that it's equipped with a 420-horsepower V8 engine, the first time the M3 has been available with a V8. The 4.0-liter light-alloy powerhouse borrows design elements from BMW's Formula 1 race team engines, and is about 30 pounds lighter than the I6 engine it replaces.

In fact, a lot about the 2008 BMW M3 is high-tech and efficient. For instance, the M3's brakes are regenerative, meaning they generate electric power when the driver applies a foot to the brake pedal and engages the braking mechanism. The energy generated by the brakes is used to power the car's on-board computer and charges the battery, conserving fuel, according to BMW.

BMW also notes that the 2008 M3 is the first production car in its segment with a roof made of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (again, borrowed from the motorsport side), resulting in a lighter, more efficient and more agile vehicle with a lower center of gravity.

As far as that V8 engine is concerned, it drives the vehicle from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour (about 60 miles per hour) in just under 5 seconds, yet is efficient enough to get almost 23 miles to a gallon of gas.

Where the new M3 really excels, however, is in its styling, which includes a powerdome hood, a new front end with large air intakes, a sweptback roofline, air intake gills in the front side panels, a discreet spoiler at the rear, dual tailpipes, flared wheel arches, and tuning-fork high-performance 19-inch wheels.


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