The M3 You'll Love To Hate and Hate To Love

On a gut level, you want to accept the 2008 BMW M3 Convertible's limitations, because it delivers so many of the right sensations — the insistent tone of the workaholic V8, the exhaust pop on downshifts, the beads of sweat that form on your sunburned forehead.

Yet, for all the benefits of its retractable hardtop, this M3 is too heavy for its own good, so its handling performance numbers simply aren't those of a serious performance car. And when the asking price balloons past $80,000, they really need to be.

But we suspect BMW knows exactly how to play this hand. Hard-core types like us will stick to the M3 coupe and sedan, while this M3 convertible draws a slightly less demanding crowd. And that slick dual-clutch transmission will bring us together and eventually eradicate those evil three-pedal cars altogether.

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