The current BMW M3 may be on its last legs, but a cabriolet version is on hand to provide some added excitement.The current BMW M3 may be on its last legs, but a cabriolet version is on hand to provide some added excitement.

The ragtop version of the M3 is wider and sits 14 mm lower, even with the roof closed, than its coupé sibling. It comes with features typical across BMW's M range, including hair-raising speed provided by the naturally aspirated 3,2-litre engine, M suspension with high performance brakes and a standard six-speed manual transmission with the SMG 'box as an option.

Electric motors open and close the M3 convertible's roof, the roof compartment lid comes with a closing assistant that is operated manually and the glass rear window can be heated in winter. A wind deflector helps to protect the two front occupants from unpleasant wind swirls and can be folded up into more compact dimensions when not in use.

For the optimum use of luggage space, the M3 convertible has a variable roof compartment. By moving a lever, the luggage compartment will then increase to a total of 300 litres.

Regarding the M3 convertible's safety, the body shell has been stiffened with a rollover safety system as standard, complemented by a highly stable windscreen frame. In the event of a rollover, the rear headrests would automatically move up to further protect the passengers.

The new suspension geometry with a wider track along with the new Variable M Differential Lock and Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) ensure smooth motoring.

The inner-vented compound brakes with cross-drilled brake discs and 18-inch light alloy wheels shod with 225/45 ZR 18 and 255/40 ZR 18 tyres ensure that the M3 convertible will stop in the quickest times. Like the M3 coupé, 19-inch wheels are available as an option.

The M3 convertible's 3,2-litre straight six powerplant produces a 252 kW at 7 900 r/min and maximum torque of 365 N.m at 4 900 r/min. Despite its high engine speeds, about 80 per cent of this M3's torque is available from 2 000 r/min.

Weighing 1 655 kg, the M3 convertible accelerates from 0-100 km/h in 5,5 seconds, and reaches a top speed of 250 km/h (electronically limited).

Despite its power, the M3 convertible - equipped with a 63-litre fuel tank – is claimed to consume 12,1 litres of fuel per 100 km on average and 8,8-litres per 100 km in freeway conditions.

The SMG transmission, which is said to combine sporty sequential shifting with the ease of automated shifting, is available with optional Drivelogic. This transmission also comes with a climbing assistant for pulling away on a slope with minimal rolling, and acceleration assist or launch control when maximum acceleration is required.

In terms of equipment, the M3 convertible virtually mimics its coupé sibling: full Nappa leather upholstery, electric front sport seats, bi-xenon headlamps and a 6-disc CD changer are just some of the standard kit available. The M3 convertible has a Harman Kardon sound system as standard equipment while the coupé features the Professional sound system.

Inside the four-seater sports car, entrance to the full-sized rear seats is aided by the electrical rear seat entry. Isofix points have been provided for two child seats in the rear.

Original article from Car