M fans will have to wait until September next year to get there first glimpse of the next generation M3. The information came straight from the horse's mouth - BMW’s M division boss Ulrich Bruhnke. According to Bruhnke, the new car will be unveiled at next year’s Frankfurt Motor Show in September ahead of its world launch in 2008. Australian Drive journalists were able to speak with Bruhnke at the recent M6 convertible launch in southern France.

The M3 was rumoured to make an appearance this month in Paris but there’s no mention of it in the BMW press kit. Traditionally the M3 is released at least 12 months after the regular 3-series coupe. Possible specifications and pricing that seem to be accurate were released just last month. Importantly, it will come with a 412hp 4L V8 and BMW’s second generation 7-speed SMG as well as a conventional 6-speed manual.

Bruhnke was tight lipped about the new M car. The message he had was that the new will definitely not be dull. Unlike Mercedes Benz he adds, the next M3 would stay faithful to maintaining BMW’s high standards for handling and dynamics over engine output.