The BMW M Division is celebrating its birthday proper today on May 24 with a limited-edition BMW M3 available in the boldest and best colors of past M3s. The best, of course, is Techno Violet, originally seen on the E36 M3. But the rest of the colors are great, too!
All five colors available on the 2023 BMW M3 Edition 50 Jahre BMW M pay tribute to past M3 models. Here are all five heritage colors available, along with the M3 generation that debuted each shade:
- Cinnabar Red - E30 M3
- Techno Violet - E36 M3
- Deep Interlagos Blue - E46 M3
- Fire Orange III - E92 M3 Lime Rock Park Edition
- Limerock Gray - F80 M3 Cs
These colors are deep-cut historical throwbacks for M3 fans, and they’re the main thing setting apart this special edition M3 from its stablemates. Mechanically, the special edition is based on the 2023 BMW M3 Competition xDrive, with the same 3.0-liter twin-turbo inline-six making 503 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque. One small wrinkle: Since the special edition is based on the all-wheel-drive M3, that means it will only be available with the eight-speed automatic. Curses!
There are a few other modifications: vintage-inspired roundel badges, forged wheels with a gray finish, contrasting-color brake calipers, carbon rear spoiler, carbon exhaust tips, and M-themed upholstery. The special edition package adds $8,550 over a standard model. The carmaker says the BMW M3 Edition 50 Jahre BMW M will start at $96,695 in the U.S. and will be limited to only 500 examples in the country.
There’s a numbered plaque inside the car. The M3 also comes with a suitcase to mark the occasion, according to Car and Driver, which is surely a sign that BMW is having a little too much fun at its birthday party.
The first sign was the silly names BMW gave these anniversary models, starting with the M 1000 RR 50 Years M motorcycle. And now this M3 Edition 50 Jahre BMW M — “Jahre” is German for “years,” by the way. Those long names seem even longer in contrast to the M Division, where one letter was all BMW needed to get its point across. So this naming scheme feels a little like a celebratory toast that goes on too long.
Really, BMW M is just having a good time, letting a German word slip here and there, and remembering M3s past. After all, you only turn 50 once.