Skip to main content
HOME   |   ABOUT   |   NEWS   |   TECH ARTICLES   |   AT THE TRACK   |   REVIEWS   |   VIDEOS   |   CONTACT ME

2020 G80 BMW M3 to bring more than 500 hp and AWD


The current (and outgoing) BMW M3 upset quite a few purists when it switched to turbocharging to boost power from a long line of naturally aspirated engines. It looks like the upcoming G80 M3 based on the new G20 3-series is looking to buck the tradition again by being the first ever M3 to offer AWD/4WD. That's right, it looks like the next M3 will send power to all four wheels according to a report by Auto Express.

Of course, it won't be the first ever M-car to offer AWD. That honour goes to the current M5 which was the first M sedan/saloon car, so perhaps that should have been a sign of things to come. It makes a lot of sense, given the competition. Fast Audi have been AWD for several generations and recently, AMG announced that the future of AMG is four-wheel drive.


Tough Competition

Audi is nearly synonymous with AWD and with AMG now switching to AWD, a RWD M3 would (unfortunately) be quite handicapped in terms of traction and objective performance. Competition isn't only from petrol/gasoline cars only, of course. The Tesla Model 3 Performance - which is also AWD if still very unproven - has shown more than once of being capable of beating a current M3 on track. Here's the latest example from Top Gear.


Competitors from less established brands are still RWD, such as Alfa's Giulia Quadrofoglio and Cadillac's ATS-V. But the ATS-V is soon to be dead and who knows what the next Alfa will be. Of course, the current AMG C63 is still RWD but its replacement likely won't be.

Fortunately, the system will almost certainly match the current M5 setup. That means multiple modes, including a 2WD mode sending power only to the rear wheels if you still want to drive a RWD M3. For the purists, that won't be enough because the weight and parasitic drag from drivetrain components connected to the front wheels will keep the system from feeling 100% like true RWD, but at least it will drive like a RWD car otherwise. BMW seems to not be too concerned about old-school steering feedback, anyway, so perhaps there isn't much to lose.


The Power

The car should use a modified M version of the new B58 turbocharged 3.0 litre straight six engine in the G20 340i. It will likely switch to twin-turbos like the current M3/M4. The most powerful version of the current M3/M4 was M4 GTS, which made 493 hp with the help of water-injection. The next rung down is the M3/M4 CS making 454 hp. Auto Express reports that the next one will come with 480 hp as standard which is a substantial jump, and an optional Competition Package will make 510 hp.


The most power ever in an M3 combined with the first ever AWD M3 should make a huge difference in acceleration. In the hands of Car and Driver magazine, the current M5 cracked the 3 second barrier and set a 0-60 mph run in just 2.8 seconds. This upcoming M3 shouldn't be far behind. And thankfully, it appears like it will sound MUCH better than the outgoing M3/M4 based on the spy video of testing at the Nürburgring.


Under The Skin

Being based on the new G20 3-series means starting off with a stiffer and lighter chassis. When BMW revealed the current 3-series, it said it will be 120 lb. (54 kg) lighter than the last one and overall torsional stiffness was up by 25% and specific load bearing sections (such as the front strut tower with brace) are stiffer by up to 50%. The new 3-series also widened front track significantly to 62.3" (1,582 mm) and rear up slightly to 62.9" (1,598 mm) which is nearly the same as the current and outgoing M3. You can read all about the G20 3-series here. The new M3 will likely improve even further on those.

Overall, it sounds like the new M3 will be phenomenally capable. BMW announced that it will reveal it in September at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Expect prices to creep up for the new model, more so than usual with a new M3 as a result of the addition of the AWD system. While I don't love how BMW is moving further and further away from the original M3 formula, I'm really curious to see what this M3 will be capable of. I suspect it will leapfrog the current one in performance.

Follow Ram's Eye The Track Guy on Facebook and Instagram!





Comments







Does An Aftermarket Grille Really Increase Airflow?
I put a Saleen S281 grille to the test to answer that question.

Stock Suspension S197 Mustang With Square 305/30/19's
What you need to fit a proper size square tire setup.

How Limited Slip Diffs Make You Faster on Track
What you need to know about how they put power down and pros and cons.

Can Telemetry Explain Schumacher's Talent?
A comparison between Schumacher's and then team mate Herbert's data.






Cayman GT4 Track Review
The first Cayman with proper (911-challenging) power.

Is an EcoBoost Mustang any good on Track?
Two days at the track in a Mustang short 4 cylinders.

2016 BMW M4 DCT Track Review
It's quick (properly quick). But is it fun?

Can a stock Golf Diesel handle a Track Day?
Not your every day track beater.




🔥 Most Visited This Week

Michelin Pilot Super Sports vs Firestone Firehawk Indy 500 - Street Review

I've been a huge fan of Michelin PSS tires and exclusively bought them for the Mustang over the last four years. So how did I end up here? This year, I was hugely interested in trying an "R-comp" tire. I had my eyes set on Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R's for two simple reasons: price and reputation. Although not a true "R-comp" tire on paper, it performs like one by the account of every single test and review I've read (down to wear rates...). They seem like they're easily the most affordable (from a big brand) R-comp tire and combine that with a reputation for having tons of grip, it was an easy top contender. I had my concerns, though. For one, I'm told and have read that they are an autox tire, not really designed for high speed, pressure, and temps associated with open track. For another, the Mustang is a heavy car (as far as track cars are concerned) being roughly 3,800 lb. (including driver), which will amplify the unwanted open track loads.…

Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R Track Review

For better or for worse, I have heard and read so much about RE-71R's. Everyone swears by the grip but complains about the wear. Generally speaking, the pros are:

1. They grip as well or better than most R comps.
2. They don't wear as quickly as R comps if driven occasionally on the street.
3. They work better in the rain than R comps.

The cons were limited to overheating quickly when used on track (being an autocross tire) and wearing too fast on heavy cars like mine.

In the popular 200 TW category, they are faster than the popular Hankook RS-4's and BFGoodrich Rival S's according to published Tire Rack Tests. According to plenty of reviews, they are also faster than well established R comps like R888R's (which don't seem to work too well on heavy cars anyway) and the venerable NT01's. But I was still hesitant for a while until I talked to a tire tech support gentleman at Tire Rack who has gone faster on RE-71R's than NT01s. In a Mustang (his own, not…

GTR vs Evo X vs STI: which has the best AWD system?

A few weeks ago, I made a post explaining mainstream AWD system types and how they compare, pros and cons, etc. including some simple diagrams to show where the power goes and how much. As promised, this post will focus on specific cars and what AWD systems they use, especially ones that that have more or less been defined by their AWD systems, and the best place to start may be with a bombshell; the Nissan GT-R.


Nissan GT-R (R35)

The GT-R has built a reputation around having monster traction and very approachable performance, thanks to its AWD system - Advanced Total Traction Engineering System for All-Terrain (ATTESA) - and what it can do for you. But the GT-R doesn't actually use the most mechanically sophisticated type of AWD systems discussed in the previous article, namely a "true" AWD with a centre differential. Instead, it uses a clutch pack to transfer power.


The R32, R33, and R34 Skyline GT-R's used a system that looked basically identical to the traditiona…

Stock Suspension S197 Mustang With Square 305/30/19's

If you've had any doubts about whether or not they will fit, fear not! You absolutely can run square 305/30/19's. I had a lot of doubts before pulling the trigger, even more so when the wheels where on the car. The tires do poke out a bit and I figured rubbing is all but guaranteed at full compression but I couldn't be happier I trusted APEX and those on here who have run it.

Here's what you need:

1. Camber plates: I have MM C/C plates and they are maxed out at -2.3 deg with the stock struts. I have been running them for years with many track days without issue.

2. 1"/25 mm spacer: I have Motorsport-tech 1" spacers and they look like high quality units. There is maybe a 1/4 inch clearance in the back so you can't go any narrower than 25 mm. http://www.motorsport-tech.com/adaptec/car/ford_s and you want Design 2.


3. Elongated studs: your best bet is to get the FPP hubs with elongated studs instead of reusing the old one. Bearings are consumables anyway so…