2018 BMW M3 review

Research, photos, specs, and expertise

BMW M3 highlights

Customer rating


  • Agile handling without a penalizing ride quality
  • Upscale, well-equipped interior with room for four adults
  • Powerful brakes


  • Other sport sedans sound better and go faster
  • Steering is less lively than in competitors
  • Lack of advanced driver assist systems

Mileage (EPA estimate)

16 city, 22 highway, 19 combined

Pricing for current inventory

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The 2018 BMW M3 offers enthusiasts legendary performance with four-door practicality

“Iconic” is a word that’s often misapplied, but it’s the perfect way to describe the BMW M3. The 2018 version of this sport sedan added a standard rear-view camera and a new version of BMW’s iDrive infotainment, but otherwise was a carryover from the previous model year.

That means, like previous model years, the 2018 BMW M3 features a powerful turbocharged six-cylinder engine under the hood and a sport suspension that gives enthusiasts maximum reward behind the wheel. The available Competition package massages that performance to even greater heights. The downsides are few. Hard-core enthusiasts might wish for better steering feedback, and some competitors are quicker in a straight line.

Best of all, none of that capability hurts the M3 as a daily driver. The M3 shares the practicality of the BMW 3 Series sedan it’s based on, including comfortable front seats, decently sized rear seats and a good-sized trunk. The firm suspension is smartly tuned to smooth out sharp bumps, and it features modern amenities; we recommend looking for models equipped with optional Apple CarPlay® integration.

All BMW M3 years

What is new for the 2018 BMW M3?

  • The M3 is available in a new trim called the CS.
  • M3 trims have been upgraded with Adjustable Suspension, Automated Cruise Control, Leather & Suede Seats, Rear View Camera, Leatherette & Cloth, 20 Inch Plus Wheels, Automatic Transmission, and Apple CarPlay as standard equipment this year.
  • Rear Seat Heaters and Run Flat Tires features are now available as options on select trims.

2018 BMW M3 trims

Curious how BMW M3 trims differ? Use our side-by-side vehicle comparison to see the differences and similarities


  • 425-hp, 406-lb-ft of torque 3.0L
  • Rear Defroster
  • Cruise Control
  • Leather Seats
  • Power Seats
  • Memory Seats
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Power Mirrors
  • Traction Control
  • View our BMW M3 inventory


  • Includes all features available on the Base
  • 453-hp, 443-lb-ft of torque 3.0L
  • Automated Cruise Control
  • Leather & Suede Seats
  • 20 Inch Plus Wheels
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Apple CarPlay

5 reasons to buy the 2018 BMW M3

What We Like

Performance: If you’re shopping for a luxury sport sedan, there’s no question the BMW M3 should be high on your consideration list. It continues the tradition of high-performance luxury sedans that started with the original BMW M3 in the 80s, and it rarely disappoints.

Practicality: Second only to its performance is the M3’s practicality as a daily driver. With performance that lets it compete head-to-head with contemporary sports cars like the Chevrolet Corvette, the BMW M3 also brings a comfortable driver’s seat, decently sized rear seat and good-sized trunk to the mix. It’s no SUV, but if you want sports-car levels of performance but still need an easily accessible rear seat, it’s tough to beat the M3.

Iconic: If you measure performance strictly by the numbers, it’s true that the M3 is outrun by some competitors. But so what? The M3 is a performance icon, with the simple name carrying considerable weight in performance circles.

What Needs Improvement

Driver Assist Tech: Die-hard enthusiasts might say a performance car like the M3 doesn’t need driver-assist tech, but we disagree. By 2018 features like active cruise control, lane keeping assist and others were commonplace on even mainstream cars, but the M3 offers only lane-departure and forward collision warning, and low-speed emergency braking. And even those were part of an optional package.

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings


RepairPal gave the BMW M3 an overall reliability rating of 2.5 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Average. This rating ranks BMW M3 57th out of 68 among Luxury Midsize Cars.

View RepairPal's full rating of the BMW M3

BMW M3 features and specs

(no trim) 2WD 4D Sedan

Standard Features

  • ABS Brakes
  • Adjustable Suspension
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • CD Audio
  • Cruise Control
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Harman Kardon Sound
  • Leatherette & Cloth
  • Manual Transmission
  • Memory Seat(s)
  • Navigation System
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear Spoiler
  • Rear View Camera
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Smart Key
  • Traction Control
  • Turbo Charged Engine
  • 20 Inch Plus Wheels
  • Apple CarPlay
  • Blind Spot Monitor
  • Head Up Display
  • Heated Steering Wheel
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Leather Seats
  • Parking Sensors
  • Rear Seat Heaters
  • Rear Sunshade
  • Rear View Camera
  • Run Flat Tires
  • Sunroof(s)

Drive Wheels

Rear Wheel Drive (2WD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type

Turbo Gas

Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 42"/R 35.1"

Head room

F 40.3"/R 37.7"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity



Manual 6

2018 BMW M3 FAQ

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