Munich - Although it was always a given that the next-generation BMW M3 would use BMW’s new S58 3-litre straight-six engine first released in the new X3 M and X4 M, we are now able to confirm the new sedan’s outputs - and the top version actually gets slightly more power than those aforementioned crossovers.

In an interview with the UK’s Car Magazine, BMW M Division boss Markus Flasch revealed that the Competition version of the new M3 would be good for 380kW, while the standard variant would be tuned to produce 358kW. That’s 5kW more than you get in the equivalent X3 and X4 M models, although the M3 is likely to offer the same torque figure of 600Nm in both versions.

This will make the new M3 models significantly perkier than their predecessors, which produced between 317kW and 338kW, depending on the model, although the low-volume GTS did muster 368kW.

Flasch also confirmed to the publication that the upcoming super-saloon would be offered in all-wheel-drive and rear-wheel-drive guises, unlike the next-gen Mercedes-AMG C63, which will only be offered in all-wheel-drive guise with a RWD drift mode - according to a recent report by Top Gear.

The all-wheel-drive M3 will also get a drift mode however, with Flasch confirming that it will have the same set-up as the latest M5. With power being put to the road more cleanly, you can expect much-improved acceleration figures for the new M3 models.

There will also be a rear-wheel-drive version of the next M3, mated to a manual gearbox, but this purist configuration will only be available in the lesser-powered M3, according to numerous sources abroad.

BMW is also expected to debut a new M4 around the same time as the M3, with a reveal possibly happening later this year.

IOL Motoring