BMW North America Announces Frozen Gray M3 Special Edition
It was twenty-five years ago that BMW released the M3 on the American market, creating an icon for the brand that billed itself as building the Ultimate Driving Machine. Since then, the M3 has been a perennial favorite among performance driving enthusiasts. To commemorate a quarter century of this legendary model, BMW North America has commissioned a very special edition of the 2011 M3 coupe.
There won't be any "special edition" badging emblazoned on this model, however. Instead, it will be known instantly by its special finish, Frozen Gray, a matte-finished version of BMW's popular Space Gray paint that is available in Europe as a BMW Individual color. BMW will build just thirty — that's right, 3-0 — examples of the 2011 Frozen Gray M3. All will be coupes, and will be equipped identically.
The interior will sport an equally impressive color treatment from BMW Individual. Special Fox Red leather will accent the black interior for a unique two-tone treatment in fine-grade Novillo hides. BMW's signature carbon-look leather will still grace the dashboard.
Each Frozen Gray M3 will receive the new Competition package, with lightweight 19-inch wheels, lower suspension, electronic dampers, and remapped EDC and DSC. Premium and Technology packages will also be standard, along with the premium sound system, iPod adapter and satellite radio, as well as heated front seats. The only transmission will be the seven-speed M DCT automated dual-clutch manual.
Pricing for the Frozen Gray M3 is set at $77,600 including destination. All thirty of the cars will be available for delivery by the end of August 2010, with the first deliveries starting in late June.
So how does BMW determine which of its 338 dealers get to sell thirty cars? Easy — they'll let the buyers decide. BMW will open a toll-free reservation line where interested parties can get in line to become one of the lucky owners. Starting at 11:30 AM Eastern Time (8:30 AM Pacific Time) on Monday, June 21, prospects can call 1-800-245-4269 to be added to the list on a first-come-first-served basis. The first thirty people will be referred to the BMW dealer of their choice (or the nearest one by ZIP code if they have no preference) to work out the final transaction. Buyers will have ten days to finalize their order, and will have the option of working with another dealer if they can't make a deal with their first one. Should any of the first thirty prospects fail to complete the transaction, BMW will move to the next person on the waiting list.
A BMW spokesman said this approach is the fairest way for customers to buy such a limited model, avoiding the political nightmare of trying to assign a high-demand vehicle to less than one in eleven of its dealer body. He also said BMW North America is taking measures to prevent its dealers from ordering cars for speculative sale, though he admitted there are no guarantees it won't happen.
The Frozen Gray M3 will be the first time BMW has offered a matte-finish paint on one of its cars in the US. However, BMW has a fairly long track record with matte paints on its motorcycles, and foresees no special issues with the M3's finish. The Frozen Gray paint will be covered under the same 4-year/50,000-mile warranty as any other BMW finish.
Below is the full press release from BMW North America:
Woodcliff Lake, NJ – 4:00 PM Eastern Time, June 17, 2010… Nearing the 25th anniversary of the original BMW M3, BMW of North America today announced a production run of thirty identically-equipped 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupes for the United States. The 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe features a special matte-gray paint with a deep metallic luster to further accentuate the athletic lines of the legendary M3. Unique Fox Red / Black bi-color Novillo leather interior is also specified. This is the first and only opportunity to obtain Frozen Gray Metallic exterior paint on the M3 for the 2011 model year in the United States.
BMW M enthusiasts will be able to reserve a 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe by dialing 1-800-245-4269 no earlier than 11:30AM Eastern Time (8:30AM Pacific) on Monday, June 21, 2010. The first 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupes will become available for delivery in late June 2010 through Authorized BMW Centers, and the production run will be completed by the end of July 2010. A complete equipment list is provided at the end of this press release. MSRP will be $77,600 .
Each 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe will be powered by the now famous 4.0-liter, 414-horsepower M V8 and equipped with BMW’s M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT). Also specified is the new M3 Competition Package, which adds an exclusive set of 19-inch wheels and other upgrades. Additionally, each purchase of the 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe will include a one-day enrollment at the BMW Performance Driving School in Spartanburg, South Carolina.
The 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe continues the tradition of innovation and passion for driving by incorporating key changes to the M3’s dynamic qualities. The equipped Competition Package reduces vehicle ride height by 10mm and includes unique 19” wheels with wider offset for enhanced stability, standard Electronic Damping Control with enhanced programming, and higher-threshold programming for the M Dynamic Mode. The 2011 Frozen Gray M3 Coupe is also equipped with the M Double Clutch Transmission (M DCT) which lowers the 0-60mph acceleration time of the M3 to 4.5 seconds from 4.7 (6-speed manual).
Introducing Frozen Gray Metallic Paint
The special BMW Individual matte paintwork on the Frozen Gray M3 adds a rare metallic luster to the vehicle. Compared to conventional exterior colors with gloss finish, the sculpture-like character of Frozen Gray paint highlights the athletic contours of the M3. To achieve this luster, a special BMW ColorSystem silk matte clear coat is applied over the Space Gray Metallic base coat.
25 Years and Four Generations of BMW M3
Racing provided the reason for the original M3’s 1986 creation. BMW produced the M3 as a road-going homologation version of its 3 Series to gain eligibility to compete in the German Touring Car Championship. Popularity and strong consumer demand substantiated the case to continue developing the M3, making it both a better performer and more inviting road car as it evolved along with the underlying 3 Series, the company’s most popular vehicle. In 1988, North Americans met the BMW M3 for the first time, and its high-revving 2.3-liter inline-4 with 192-hp became a legend on this side of the Atlantic.
The next generation M3 arrived in the 1995 model year with a 3.0-liter (and later, 3.2-liter) 240-hp inline-6 powerplant. That car began the next chapter of M3 Racing history which lasted a decade on both sides of the Atlantic. In 1997 the first M3 Sedan joined the family and the M3 Convertible followed shortly thereafter.
The third-generation M3, available from 2001-2006 as a coupe and convertible, again was offered with six-cylinder power, this time providing a remarkable 333 hp from 3.2 liters. From the 2002 model year, this M3 marked BMW’s first offering of the Sequential Manual Gearbox (SMG) for the United States.
The fourth and current generation M3 was introduced for the 2008 model year as a Coupe, Sedan, and Convertible, featuring an all-new 4.0-liter, 414-horsepower V8 engine with eight individual throttle bodies and an 8,400-rpm redline. Showcasing its remarkable performance envelope, the newest M3 Coupe serves as the basis for the M3 GT2 race car, which successfully competes in endurance races against the most exotic cars from around the world in the American Le Mans Series.
Equipment List: 2011 BMW Frozen Gray M3 Coupe
• BMW Individual Frozen Gray Metallic exterior paint.
• BMW Individual bi-color (Fox Red with Black) Novillo Leather interior.
• M DCT Transmission
• Competition Package (Electronic Damping Control, 19” light-alloy wheels, lowered suspension, sport mapping for EDC and DSC)
• Premium Package (Power folding mirrors, universal garage door opener, digital compass mirror, BMW Assist with Bluetooth, Novillo Leather, Carbon Leather trim)
• Technology Package (M Drive system, Comfort Access system, Navigation system, Voice Command system, Real Time Traffic Information system)
• Heated Front Seats
• Rear Park Distance Control
• Enhanced Premium Sound System
• Satellite Radio with 1-year subscription
• iPod and USB Adaptor
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