BMW has responded to powerful new rivals with updates for the M5 and M6 - including a racy new 575hp Competition Package option
BMW celebrates M with 60 Performance Edition cars
BMW is launching 60 special edition M Performance Edition models solely for the UK market - all finished in a special patriotic series of red, white and blue body colours.
Both M3 Performance Edition and M5 Performance Edition cars are now on sale, each with brand-new satin-finish 'Frozen' paint colours, plus complementary detailing for the full leather interiors within.
The 60 cars are not cheap, though: £74,080 for the one-of-30 BMW M3 Performance Edition, and a breathtaking £95,140 for the one-of-30 BMW M5 Performance Edition.
BMW M3 (2007 onwards)
BMW M3 Performance Edition
The BMW M3 Performance Edition is based on the 420hp 4.0-litre V8 M3, fitted with 10mm lower Competition Package suspension and seven-speed M-DCT gearbox as standard. It also has Electronic Damper Control and a more sporting DSC+ stability control system.
Offered in either BMW Individual Japan Red with a Frozen Red Wrap, BMW Individual Frozen White or BMW Individual Frozen Blue, the M3 Performance Edition is enhanced by a moody makeover for the exterior detailing.
The 60 cars are not cheap
There are 19-inch matt black alloys, a dark chrome exhaust, side gills and kidney grilles, glossy Shadowline window surrounds and deep-tint glass, jet back bonnet intakes and a carbonfibre front splitter.
Inside, BMW has also loaded it with equipment: Harman/Kardon stereo, BMW Professional Media sat-nav system, DAB radio and all-round parking sensors to protect the unique paint finish from low-speed prangs.
All-in, the extra equipment is worth nearly £10,000: BMW charges £74,080 for the M3 Performance Edition, a premium of £19,360 for the one-of-30 M3 over the standard car.
BMW M5 Performance Edition
The BMW M5 Performance Edition is based on the standard 560hp 4.4-litre M5 that so impressed MSN Cars earlier in the year.
To the already-bountiful standard kit list, BMW includes huge 20-inch M Double-spoke matt black alloys, plus a dark chrome finish for the quad exhausts, side gills and front kidney grille. Again, deep-tint sun protection glass is also fitted.
Inside, there are M sport multi-function seats, split-fold rear seats (do special edition buyers prioritise practicality, then?), an electric bootlid and soft-close doors, plus preparation for a mobile phone.
Upping the gadget count, BMW also includes BMW Professional stereo with internet-ready sat-nav, reversing camera, USB interface and the 'active headlight' high-beam assist function.
The colours are the same patriotic matt finish collection as with the M3 Performance Edition: red, white and blue, creating another set of very distinctive BMW M5s unique to the British market.
Again, though, the BMW M5 Performance Edition is not cheap. It costs £95,140, a massive £22,075 more than the standard car. At least this time the value of the standard equipment exactly matches that...
Both limited edition BMW M Performance Edition models are on sale now - and each is identified by a special 'One of 30' laser-cut designation on the BMW Individual Piano Black interior trim. There are also BMW M Performance Edition door kickplates and special M stitching for the front seat head restraints.
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