Mostly, I love the new BMW M3 (and the M4; beneath their slightly different skins they are, BMW goes to some lengths to make clear, exactly the same car). But there is one whopping great caveat to that judgement, and it concerns you-know-what: the fact that its turbocharged.
But in this instance it isn’t just the once straightforward issue of turbocharging itself and the lag this used to create that is to blame, because to all intents and purposes there is no lag to speak of. You put your foot down in the new M3 and it goes, wallop. And it goes very hard indeed, right from the word go, thanks to some deeply clever engineering of the 3.0-litre straight six from BMW’s M magicians.
But it’s what happens after that, after the initial wave of acceleration has started to break, that I have an issue with, and you need to drill right down deep into the torque characteristics of the engine to realise why.
Peak torque of 406lb ft – which is 40 per cent more than in the old V8 M3, for heaven’s sake – arrives at a quite astonishingly low 1800rpm and then stays flat all the way to 5500rpm. And on the surface, this would appear to be the perfect way to ensure that the new twin-turbocharged 3.0-litre M3 feels like it is propelled by a non-turbocharged 6.0-litre V12.