The new BMW M3 will arrive with either a conventional six-speed manual gearbox or a newly designed seven-speed double-clutch system with paddle shifters. Called ‘M DCT’ in BMW speak, the new gearbox will be available from March next year in the M3 and will eventually filter down across the 3 and 5-series range in detuned form.

We reported previously about the possibility of a DSG-style box for the M3 a while back but this latest confirmation comes from an official document that was issued to BMW dealers, according to Autocar.

Co-developed with Getrag, the new gearbox will feature a shift lever like the one seen in the new X5 as well as the paddle shifters, and should offer faster and smoother acceleration than the conventional six-speed or the outgoing SMG.

Other options for the M3, which officially starts sales in September, will be 19in alloy wheels and a new electronic damper control.