The accolade for the single best car I’ve driven in 2010, and my most memorable automotive moment of the year, goes to the brilliantly outrageous Pagani Zonda R. Raw but delicate, lightweight but not in the least bit unsubstantial, massively fast but wonderfully controlled.
But I can’t really make a car that costs £1.5m and will be made in such limited numbers my car of 2010. So instead I’m nominating the BMW M3 Competition pack. Which might seem like a strange choice, given that what we’re talking about here is really only an option. But it’s one that transforms the M3. Not in a way that you’ll notice immediately, but that gently and almost imperceptibly polishes those areas that needed improvement, and leaves a car that’s altogether more satisfying.
The proof, not only that the more time I spent in the M3 Comp the less I wanted to give it back, but that it also saw off Audi’s brand new RS5 in our A-B challenge.
However, what I admire most about this car, is not its pure ability, but that it shows that BMW clearly listened to the criticism levelled at the original E92 M3, carefully considered what to do and came back with a better product. And the fact that although BMW’s marketing (joy) division have completely lost the plot, someone in Munich still knows how to make a decent drivers car.