UK website Autocar reports the new BMW M3 can be optioned out with a seven-speed double-clutch gearbox named, M DCT.
As much as we love the standard six-speed manual (standard) and the feel and fun factor of driving a traditional manual, the seven-speed would have to be the ideal choice.
This is a completely different system to the much criticised SMG system in the BMW M5/6. The M DCT is similar to the DSG gearboxes found in the range from Volkswagen and Audi and is made by Getrag (which has produced transmission systems for BMW for some time now).
Although everyone saw this coming, the rumours turned to fact when documents issued to BMW dealers last week confirmed the new M3’s specification. It is still not understood whether or not the BMW M3 will launch in Australia with M DCT or if that will come later in 2008.
Apart from ease of driving, the speed of a double-clutch transmission will surely reduce the BMW M3’s 0-100km time (currently quoted at 4.8secs).
Auto car says the transmission will be controlled by a combination of a shift lever and steering wheel paddles. It is expected that in time, the gearbox will find itself in the lower end of the BMW 3-series as well as the 5-series.