Heretic? Yes. The BMW M3 is one of the best high-performance cars on the planet since 1985. End of discussion.
It's the best four-door compact gasoline to go fast that money can buy. But the question here is: how does it compare to a 100% electric competitor whose price is the same?
You may think that there is a case of "apple, meet orange", but the Model 3 Performance is, in my opinion, the performance enhancement of two-engine Model S cars for which the comparison is right. If you're looking for a high-performance compact sedan and also want a 100% electric option, you had no chance until the P3D arrived.
You're out of luck. And the P3D is one of the best cars I've driven, quite simply. I like the M3. But I love Model 3 Performance more – and when I finally get to play "Track Mode", I think we're going to talk about transcendent love.
The fundamental problem is that the M3 is a legitimately savage automobile – German engineering has applied the task of taking the very rational and making it completely irrational. Like any automotive journalist, I can get bored of BMW's luxury rep and its popularity among the new rich. Then I slip into a car M and operate the accelerator pedal, and everything is forgiven. But I leave the car shaken and stunned.
Model 3 does not offer any of this. Instead, the P3D serves ideas, ideas and more ideas. The same goes for model 3, more efficient, less efficient, long-term and more pedestrian. But the P3D adds a special sauce. I do not leave the car, shaken and stunned, but impressed by the synapses that shoot, shoot, shoot.
There is no doubt that the M3 is the latest in a long and rich history of performance. But the 3 Performance model is the future.