By now BMW’s F30 M4 is a known quantity, being an über-quick German sports coupe revered for its performance and chastised for not being as tactile as its much-loved predecessor, the E92 M3 coupe. The M4 gets dinged for its twin-turbocharged inline-six that can’t match the sheer screaming joy of winding out the old M3’s naturally aspirated V-8 to its 8300-rpm limit, for its numb steering, and for its generally overdigitized nature. None of these transgressions keep the M4 from posting incredible performance numbers, but they do sap some of the fun from the process of extracting them.
If the M4 is old news, the $5500 Competition package that BMW released for 2016 is new news. (Even newer news is that the 2017 package price has dropped to $4750 for the coupe and $4250 for the convertible.) Available on both the M4 and the M3 sedan, the kit includes the optional M Adaptive suspension dampers (albeit with revised tuning), stiffer springs, blacked-out exterior trim and badges, a 19-hp bump, a substantially louder exhaust, wider tires on 20-inch wheels similar to those on the limited-production M4 GTS, and the same lightweight seats as the GTS. As you could reasonably expect from an option bundle with “competition” in its name, the Competition package intends to broaden the M4’s performance envelope.
Well, not so fast.
Despite juicing the M4’s mighty 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged inline-six by 19 horsepower to 444, the Competition package fails to put any extra spring in the coupe’s step. Our test car came equipped with the optional seven-speed dual-clutch automatic, and its 3.8-second zero-to-60-mph time fell between the times posted by two other DCT-equipped M4s we’ve tested. The extra power, added at the top of the rev range, doesn’t help straight-line acceleration much, and the 19 ponies’ effect isn’t noticeable from behind the wheel. Additionally, the tester noted that the dual-clutch’s launch-control function didn’t seem to be as effective as the previous examples’ and the M4 struggled with launch grip. Complete review on www.caranddriver.com, by Chris Doane Automotive